Cairngorm Brewery makes ‘Ginger Rodent’ beer in honour of Danny Alexander

Danny Alexander samples the beer with brewery boss Samantha Faircliff. Picture: Ian Rhind
Danny Alexander samples the beer with brewery boss Samantha Faircliff. Picture: Ian Rhind
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WHEN Harriet Harman branded Danny Alexander a “ginger rodent”, the chief secretary to the Treasury took the controversial insult on the chin.

Now a cheeky microbrewery in his Highland constituency has immortalised Harman’s scathing remark through the name of its latest beer.

Taking it all in good cheer, Alexander visited the Cairngorm Brewery in Aviemore yesterday to sample the new “Ginger Rodent” brew and unveil the company’s £1.6 million expansion plans, which include the building of a bottling plant.

The brewery raised £665,000 from Bank of Scotland, £150,000 from Highlands & Islands Enterprise and £100,000 from the European Regional Development Fund to finance the project.

Expanding the brewery and building the bottling hall is a big move for the firm, which turned over about £1.5m last year.

Managing director Samantha Faircliff said: “It is a huge step in our business life but one we felt we had to take. Our business has grown considerably since our early days and it makes sense to do our own bottling here.”

Building a bottling plant could also mark a step forward for the entire microbrewing industry in Scotland.

“We have had some very encouraging responses from other breweries thinking of entrusting their bottling to us and I am confident we will be handling the bottling requirements for a number of Scottish brewers when we become fully operational next year,” Faircliff said.

“As well as sub-contracting bottling for other breweries next year, we are looking to increase our exports, in particular in Europe, the United States and Canada, from where we have had a number of enquiries.”

After sampling the new brew, Alexander planted his tongue very firmly in his cheek and said: “I’ll maybe take a couple of bottles down to Harriet Harman for her to savour.”