Martin Saunders

Bristol is overloaded with world-class breweries right now and Wiper And True is among the best. They’re nearly as famous for the striking, gold-embossed labels on their bottles as they are the delicious, hops-loaded liquid inside.

How does Bristol inspire you?

“When we started, I was nervous about meeting other brewers. I’d never been in the industry before and found the thought of introducing myself quite daunting. But I couldn’t have been welcomed more. The other brewers, our competitors, were so encouraging and excited about what we were doing. They taught me everything they could about the local trade, about suppliers, processes, and even shared recipes. We ended up brewing a collaboration beer with Arbor Ales, were put on an official mentoring scheme with the Bristol Beer Factory and ended up moving in with Ashley Down Brewery. I still think back to those times in amazement.”

Why is Bristol such an ideas factory?

“Until recently Bristol was thought of as a cider city and at the turn of the century there were no historic breweries left. But maybe the lack of ties to traditional brewing gave freedom to new brewers to be creative with recipes. We meet up for beers. We collaborate. We talk all the time and share information to an extent that would be unheard of in other markets. It’s a real privilege to be part of, and feels very Bristol to have businesses that should be in fierce competition with each other all getting along like a house on fire.”

What’s your favourite Bristol institution?

“The rock slide in Clifton! It’s a 50-foot section of slanted rock at the top of the Avon Gorge that’s become smooth after years of people sliding down it after a few ciders at the Coronation Tap. Historic silliness.”

Tell us why Bristol is the place to be.

“Because it has a lovely balance of ambition and creativity on the one hand, and calmness and wit on the other.”