All great men and women leave a legacy behind them. Henry VIII, the most famous of the Tudors, for instance not only left behind a succession of failed marriages, but also a lasting impression on the Church. Now you don’t have to be a Tudor monarch to leave a legacy, and one man who has left a lasting impression is Stephen Devine who’s legacy is the award winning Tudor Brewery.
“He was very much an entrepreneur,” proudly explains one of his sons and Managing Director, Jaime. “He had businesses ranging from coach travel, taxis, two milk rounds and a bar in Turkey,” he continues. However when tragedy struck in 2008 in the form of a cancer diagnosis, Stephen sold off all of his businesses in order to concentrate on his recovery.
Despite a varied business portfolio, Stephen always had an interest in brewing, and so when in remission he started the brewery in Llanhilleth back in March 2011. “It was going to be the start of his life again,” speaks Jaime.
Three months later, in June, tragedy was to strike again. Stephen was diagnosed with lung cancer and sadly passed away just five days later. “My mother, brothers and sister got together and decided to keep this going in my Father’s memory and to carry on a legacy,” says Jaime, that’s exactly what they’ve done.
From those first few fragile months, Tudor Brewery bounced right back and within the first 12 months of trading, they managed to not only pick themselves back up after the death of their beloved Father and husband, they had picked up a couple of awards too. Although proud of all their awards, the two that Jaime and the rest of the Devine’s are most proud of are the Three Gold Stars at the Great Taste Awards 2012, as well as being named in the Top 75 Food and Drink Products in the UK by The Guild of Fine Food.
“As we had only just started out, we did not expect such praise and recognition so quickly,” Jaime modestly says, but it is well deserved. Attempting to source all their ingredients from local Welsh producers, as well as filling, capping and labelling each bottle by hand, every batch of beer brewed is truly made with “commitment and pride” and this is undoubtedly reflected in the taste.
Not only are the Devines doing themselves proud by producing some of the best beer in the area, they are truly doing Stephen proud and his legacy lives on with every bottle of Tudor beer brewed.