Limited edition beers lead to turnover increase for German brewery

German brewers, Michael Hopert and Andi Scheib, of award-winning independent Top Out Brewery based in Loanhead, Midlothian, celebrate doubling their cask and keg sales and increasing their turnover by £40k in the last two years, following the launch of a new range of limited edition beers and ongoing support from Business Gateway Midlothian.

The company, which combines Scottish and German brewing influences to create original, craft beers including pale ales, wheat beer and a smoked porter, was co-founded by Michael, a keen mountaineer from Frankfurt, in 2013 and has gone from strength-to-strength over the last two years.

Former geologist Andi, from Heppenheim, joined Top Out Brewery in 2017 to help grow the business which supplies to various shops, bars and restaurants, including Great Grog, Cork&Cask, Beerhive, Cornelius, Royal Mile Whiskies, The Hanging Bat, No.1 the Grange, Barony Bar, Jeremiah's Taproom, Harmonium and Footlights.

Their recently launched First Ascents limited edition beers, including Yucatan Honey Wheat Wine and Triple Lemon Sour, follows on from the success of their core products and branding, which is designed to reflect their passion for hillwalking and mountaineering in the Scottish Highlands.

In addition, they have expanded their German beer ranges, with the help of Hans Otto who worked as a Braumeister at Heylands and later Eder Brauerei in Aschaffenburg in Bavaria for over 25 years. These include Schmankerl Hefeweizen, Altbier and Kellerbier.

Their Schmankerl wheat beer, Staple Pale Ale, Copperheid Amber Ale, Smoked Porter and Altbier lager/ale hybrid featured in Aldi’s Craft Beer Festivals for the last three years.

Ongoing support from Business Gateway Midlothian which has helped the business to successfully grow has included 121 growth consultancy, marketing, branding and digital support.

Michael, who has always had a passion for brewing his own beer since he was in his early 20s, said:  “We are delighted at the success of the business and its continued growth. We have a unique, wide range of products, using both German and Scottish influences and strong relationships with our clients which has allowed us to continue to bring new ranges to the marketplace including our popular limited edition beers.

“We are immensely grateful to Business Gateway Midlothian who have supported us along the way and would advise anyone in business to tap into the free resources available for anyone at any stage of their business journey, which have been an incredible help to us.”

Ann Marie Macaskill, Head of Business Gateway Midlothian said: “Top out Brewery are a great success story for Midlothian. Their passion for all things Scotland and Germany is at the heart of what they do.

“Every bottle of beer tells a story from innovative labelling representing Scotland’s beautiful mountain summits to producing craft beer which blends together the very best of Scotland and Germany right here in Midlothian.

“It’s been fantastic working with them and providing ongoing support as they venture further towards launching new ranges, hosting brewery open days and putting themselves firmly on the craft beer map along with the mountains!

Business Gateway Midlothian provides expert support and guidance to new and existing businesses, including free advice from experienced business advisers to help start-ups and growth businesses planning to expand or find new ways of doing business. 

Free resources include local workshops and seminars covering everything from marketing and finance to HR and ecommerce.

Adam Beach
Article by Adam Beach
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