We’re revisiting the OG Doctor Morton’s beer! Snake Oil was first brewed in 2008, and we’d never have predicted what it started! From “newfangled beers with weird pumpclips” to an extensive and entertaining series of easy drinking pale ales that sit happily within our wider range.
The Doctor Morton’s series was brought into being by our previous designer Ivan, who suggested a range based around medicine-show theme names. Our owner Pat wasn’t so sure at first, but certain customers of ours couldn’t get enough and so he eventually bowed to commercial pressure!
The range began life as the place for our brewers to try new hops in different combinations – almost all were, and still are, what we call here “cask pale specials”. They’ve always been really popular – strong sellers and a talking point for publicans and drinkers alike!
Although it was the first to be brewed and released, Snake Oil was not the first to be “invented”… many of the other suggestions were so off the wall that it was felt we needed to make sure people had a slightly more straightforward introduction to the series and understood the medicine bottle style theme. Most of the other beers which are now familiar names have somewhat more of an obscure name, such as Duck Baffler – what on earth is one of those?! – or they include some kind of joke or pun… Angler Management springs to mind! Brewery co-owner Sue recollects her favourite: “when making a beer flavoured with ginger, we gave a specific instruction that the beer should simply be called ‘Ginger Beer’ so that people would for once know what they were getting. What did we get? Djinn Jar Beer!”
We’re continually evolving the range and adding new beers so the good Doctor can carry on his work inspired by the travelling salesman of yesteryear. Although the look has in recent years been updated by our designer James (now including a miniature portrait of Doctor Morton himself, our brewery owner Pat), we’ve kept a strong hold on the wit and eccentricities this series brings. They’re instantly recognisable, a distinctive range which sits happily alongside our other offerings.