Empress Ale acquires distribution rights for Celia lager
Image courtesy of Empress Ale
Premium craft British pale ale brand Empress Ale has announced it has acquired the distribution rights for Czech lager Celia, available in two variants of Celia Dark and Celia Organic.
Launched in 2012, Celia is a strong contender in the beer and lager sector. Gluten and wheat free, organic and vegan friendly, the easy drinking lager allows retailers to capitalise on a number of key consumer trends and offer an exceptional beer that is compliant with the diet followed by coeliacs, those with a gluten intolerance or those who simply choose to shun gluten. Containing three key premium organic ingredients – Moravian Malt, Saaz hops and locally sourced water – Celia Organic’s tasting notes reportedly reflect a delicate bitterness and a hint of citrus and grass to deliver a clean, refreshing finish and a singularly smooth light taste; while the densely black Celia Dark with its distinctive coffee like aroma and slightly nutty and rye bread undertones is thick and chewy on the palate, boasting a bold, toasted malt character. The traditional batch brewing technique employed to create the lager utilises a natural carbonation process which helps avoid the unpleasant ‘bloating’ after effect often associated with drinking beer. In addition, Celia represents a lower calorie lager option when compared with other lagers on the market, providing 139 calories per 330 ml bottle.
Celia owes its characteristic and easy drinking flavour to the use of 100% Saaz Hops, one of the four original ‘noble’ hops and the only protected variety in the world, enabling the brand to feature the Protected Designation of Origin symbol on pack.
The Celia brand is steeped in history and is brewed in the cellars of a 14th Century castle in Zatec, in the Czech Republic, using fresh water sourced directly from the local foothills and Moravian malt from the Bohemian region. Supported by the hash tag #brewedforfood, Celia prides itself on being an ideal brew for home consumption. Best served at 2-3 degrees centigrade, the gluten free lager can be enjoyed as a stand-alone drink but is equally suited to mealtimes, according to the company, complementing a wide variety of dishes and therefore appealing to the nation’s foodies.
Empress Ale founder and managing director, Surj Virk, says: “Since we launched Empress Ale our mission has been to provide desirable eateries with a British-made, quality craft beer. We have always aimed high and seen sales solidly increase despite exceptionally challenging market conditions. Celia represents an ideal fit for our portfolio both in terms of ethos and mission; it’s premium, great tasting, the perfect complement to food and is backed by an enviable heritage and provenance. With the UK’s gluten-free food and drink market anticipated to witness a CAGR of 6.2% during 2020 – 2025 (source: Mordor Intelligence), we are confident that with the right support, Celia is well placed to become the UK’s gluten-free lager of choice”.
With an RSP of £2.30 per 330ml bottle and already stocked by Waitrose and Ocado, Empress Ale will be maximising its off-trade relationships for Celia while continuing to build its on-trade portfolio. The company is planning to invest in the brand and has campaigns planned for January which will continue into 2021.
For more information, visit: www.empressale.com