The Golden Tulip

You know the way we all love a Twitter poll tournament? Well, I thought I’d run one of my own! To celebrate Indie Beer Week 2021, I’m going to run a tournament called “The Golden Tulip”, to determine the best Independent brewery in Ireland.

The winner will win a GOLD-painted, 100% SOLID glass trophy in the shape of a tulip pint glass! The said trophy is still in production, but here is a sneak peek of what it will look like. I’m sure you’ll agree it’s a rather stunning piece.

Obviously, this is just for a bit of fun and is not to be taken seriously. Hopefully, it’ll be a bit of light entertainment while we enjoy our independent Irish beer during Indie Beer Week!


The tournament will consist of the following rounds:

  • Early doors. 32 eager breweries will be grouped into 8 “crates”. Voters will choose one brewery from each crate. The top two from each crate progress to the next round.
  • The lairy round. In this round, the 16 breweries from the early doors round will be joined by 16 lairy breweries that were given a bye to this round. Same rules apply.
  • Last orders. This is where things are getting serious. Four crates of four breweries. Only the top brewery from each crate can stay for the lock-in. The other four will be booted out and sent home.
  • The lock-in. A final of 4 breweries in one crate. The doors are closed, the shutters are up, the winner takes all…

As we progress, I will seed the breweries as best I can — based on their performance in the preceding round.


Now, this is the hard part. It’s been difficult to narrow down the list of breweries. There are close to 150 breweries in Ireland and narrowing them down to just 48 has been tough. I was originally going to have 32 but ended up expanding it to include the qualifier round. I think that’s about as big as you can have it without it becoming really cumbersome. With that been said, below are the 48 breweries I went with.

There were a few factors I took into account, such as Untappd overall average, Untappd total number of ratings, how long they’ve been in business and their perceived overall reputation. Preference was given to breweries with their own kit.

Apologies to those breweries who had to be left out, there are a number of great breweries that are unlucky to have missed the cut. Having this level of choice is a real testament to how far the brewing industry has come in Ireland in recent years.

Keep an eye on our Twitter profile to vote on the Golden Tulip tournament!

Early doors

  • Black Donkey
  • Blacks Brewery
  • Brehon Brewhouse
  • BRÚ
  • Bullhouse
  • Dead Centre
  • DOT
  • Dungarvan
  • Four Provinces
  • Galway Hooker
  • Heaney
  • Hilden
  • Hope Beer
  • Killarney
  • Larkins
  • Lough Gill
  • Mescan
  • Metalman
  • Mourne Mountains
  • Reel Deel
  • St Mels
  • Sullivans
  • Third Barrel
  • Treaty City
  • Trouble Brewing
  • West Kerry
  • Western Herd
  • White Gypsy
  • Whitewater
  • Wicklow brewery
  • Wide Street

The lairy round

  • 12 Acres
  • 9 White Deer
  • Ballykilcavan
  • Boundary
  • Galway Bay
  • Kinnegar
  • Lacada
  • O Brother
  • O’Hara’s
  • Porterhouse
  • Rascals
  • Rye River
  • Whiplash
  • White Hag
  • Wicklow Wolf
  • YellowBelly