New Singapore craft brewery is no Trouble at all


Trouble Brewing opens up in Singapore focusing on creating bespoke beers for brands and events.

The latest craft brewery to start up in Singapore is Trouble Brewing – not to be confused with the Ireland-based brewery of the same name – that looks to introduce a totally different approach to making and selling beer. Most startup craft breweries start off as talented home brew enthusiasts with loads of passion and a few workable recipes; Trouble Brewing instead kicks off looking to the business-to-business (B2B) route, working with customers to create and own their bespoke beers. So whether you’re looking to make a special beer as a corporate gift for your clients, to furnish your office with a customised supply of beer for staff, or even a unique brew to share with loved ones at a wedding, Trouble Brewing will make those, no trouble at all.

Perhaps the unusual marketing slant opted by Trouble Brewing shouldn’t be too much of a surprise; Trouble Brewing’s founder and CEO Joseph Barratt also happens to be the CEO of Mutant Communications, a local boutique public relations and content marketing agency. Having spent most of his career in the media, marketing and PR landscape, ​Barratt​ says the business was borne out of a desire to marry strong branding with beer.

[Photo credit: Joel Lim Photography]

“I have always loved beer, brewing and the power of great branding – and Trouble Brewing is an opportunity to bring these worlds together,” shares Barratt (pictured above). “Our specialised model for bespoke brews is new in the beer scene, and we are looking forward to making craft beer accessible to more people.”

Backing Barratt’s intent of making that happen is master brewer Gregg Speirs. Those from the local brewing scene would remember Speirs from his time as brewing assistant at Little Island Brewing Co and the now-defunct Barefoot Brewing, makers of Jungle Beer. Right now Trouble Brewing has a range of fairly quaffable beers with styles ranging from a light “Dutch-style” pilsner and American pale ale to a dry Irish stout that any client can immediately white label, but brewer Speirs can sit down with them to specially customise a recipe that would fit their palate and needs. Customers can even create branded bottles or kegerators to dispense their beers. Trouble Brewing also sells directly to consumers via a subscription model, and their beer of choice will be delivered right on their doorstep on a monthly basis.

[Photo credit: Joel Lim Photography]

Trouble Brewing currently doesn’t have any plans to penetrate regular on-premise and off-premise channels. In fact the main challenge for Trouble is that it is right now making beer in very small batches due to the size of their brewing vessels, and thus unable to make beer at scale on a larger commercial basis. Brewer Speirs (pictured above) is also using a mainly extract base and dry yeast for making his beers, which also restricts the kind of styles – and possibly even the quality – he can make.

So for local craft breweries worried that another entrant to the local craft brewing space might spell trouble, they needn’t be too concerned at this point.