[From Herald Express] Totnes’ New Lion Brewery, named after the town’s original Lion Brewery which closed in 1926, has had its Pandit IPA beer named the 17th ‘Hottest Beer’ in the UK.

@100HottestBeers was a national poll in which people were invited to vote on Twitter for their favourite beers.  New Lion Brewery, based next to China Blue on Station Road, has seen business expand rapidly over the past year, with Pandit IPA as its most popular brew.

New Lion is part of a resurgence of brewing in the town. The Albert Inn have been producing their own beer for some time now, joined a year and a half ago by New Lion Brewery and, in the last few months, by Totnes Brewing Company beneath the Barrel House.

Pandit IPA, named after Ravi Shankar and his visits to Dartington Hall, was the first beer to sell out at last month’s Plymouth Beer Festival and was described in the Daily Telegraph as “devastatingly likeable”.

New Lion Brewery has over 150 members, and was able to invite its members and Twitter followers to support it in the vote.

New Lion’s head brewer Mat Henney said: “For a brewery that has only been in operation for 18 months, to come 17th in this prestigious national poll is a real achievement.

“For us to end up higher than some of the big hitters like Brewdog and Wild Beer Company, is amazing.

“When the voting started we were 68th in the poll, so when we found when the poll closed that we were the 17th ‘hottest beer’ in the UK, we were absolutely thrilled.”

New Lion Brewery supports various emerging social enterprises in the town, most recently brewing ‘Black Oat Mild’ in support of Grown In Totnes’ crowdfunding appeal, which raised £26,500 for local oat processing.

Celebrating the @100HottestBeers poll, brewery director Ann Monroe said: “Since the beginning, we have imagined New Lion as a community brewery, and this award is a real confirmation of that.

“For so many people to come out and vote for Pandit is a real indicator of the depth of community we have built up. We’d like to thank everyone who supported us, and we hope that this national recognition of a local success story allows the town to glow with pride.”

[Image: The New Lion Brewery team celebrating coming 17th in @100HottestBeers by making a ’17’ from Pandit IPA bottles. Left to right: Kathy Alexander, Ann Monroe, Rob Alexander, Rob Hopkins and Mat Henney.]