Northern Ireland Tourist Board

How can we help?

Or browse

Walled City Brewery hops to it with new Homebrew Academy

NI Year of Food and Drink

Posted by Tourism NI

Published November 28, 2016

Derry’s multi-award winning Walled City Brewery at Ebrington Square has announced it is to open what is believed to be the first Homebrew Academy in Ireland to celebrate the ‘Legacy and Learn To..’ monthly theme for November during Northern Ireland Year of Food and Drink 2016.

Walled City Brewery hops to it with new Homebrew Academy

James Huey (left) with staff members Andy Rough and Laura MacKenzie

Launching the new business initiative last week, owner James Huey said he was responding to huge demand from visitors to Walled City Brewery keen to learn how to brew their own craft beer.

“We're incredibly excited about the launch of the Homebrew Academy at Walled City Brewery and we’re amazed at the phenomenal rise in interest from people eager to brew their own beer,” said James. “On graduating from the Homebrew Academy, each student will have the knowledge to brew amazing craft beers in their own homes and share it with friends and family. Or just keep it to themselves!"

 According to the master brewer there has been an unprecedented shift in consumer demand for locally crafted premium quality beers in the past five years, while the ancient art of home-brewing is also fizzing with popularity. Even President Obama joined the trend by brewing his own White House Honey Ale.

The Homebrew Academy, which is scheduled to open in January 2017, will be an intensive one-day boot-camp run by James at his Ebrington Square brewery, with each participant receiving a graduation certificate and a gallon of their very own brew.

Mary Blake, Tourism Development Manager with Derry City and Strabane District Council, which is actively supporting NI Year of Food and Drink through a range of themed events and initiatives, said the Homebrew Academy was an exciting new addition to the city’s international food tourism offer.

 “Walled City Brewery has been a huge local success story for James Huey and his team, winning a host of industry awards this year including ‘Most Promising New Tourism Business’ at the Northern Ireland Tourism Awards 2016 hosted by Tourism NI in Derry. They also scooped ‘Best Newcomer’ and ‘Best Gastropub’ at the Irish Restaurant Association Awards held in the Guildhall.

"Inspired by ancient local recipes and new-world brewing techniques, Walled City Brewery have paired their innovative craft beers with uniquely local slow-cooked food. The announcement of the new Homebrew Academy during ‘Legacy and Learn To..’ month will provide a golden opportunity for people to experience the art of home-brewing for themselves. It is certain to attract huge local interest and an influx of new overnight visitors to the city which has been officially recognised as Ireland’s second top Foodie Destination for the second successive year.”

James Huey and his wife Louise opened the first new craft brewery in the city for over 100 years in May 2015. Walled City Brewery’s craft beers are inspired by some of the city’s most iconic historical and cultural connections such as its shirt factories (‘Stitch’), while ‘Kicks’ was inspired by The Undertones’ legendary anthem, ‘Teenage Kicks’.

The brewery, which was inundated with applications after it recently advertised for a beer taster, also launched its popular ‘Derry Milk’ beer during NI Year of Food and Drink’s ‘Love Dairy’ month.

Tickets and gift vouchers for the Homebrew Academy are available online now at or in the Walled City Brewery during normal opening hours. For more information on Derry City and Strabane District Council’s activities during NI Year of Food and Drink 2016, visit

Caption: James Huey (left), owner and Master Brewer, with staff members Andy Rough and Laura MacKenzie of Walled City Brewery which will open its Homebrew Academy in January 2017

Posted by Tourism NI

Produced by Tourism NI