13 Jan ST. MUNGO’S FEAST DAY
Here at WEST, we love all our beers equally. But St. Mungo holds a special place in our hearts, for it’s not only the most popular of our beers to date, it also epitomises what we are all about here at WEST – a staunchly German beer, named for the founder and patron saint of our beloved home of Glasgow. As today is the feast day of St. Mungo, we thought it prime time to recall the life of the renowned man (and fellow brewer!) who inspired us to name one of our premium beers after him.
Legend has it St. Mungo performed four miracles during his life in the 6th century, recalled in the verse that also gave birth to the crest of Glasgow:
HERE IS THE BIRD THAT NEVER FLEW
HERE IS THE TREE THAT NEVER GREW
HERE IS THE BELL THAT NEVER RANG
HERE IS THE FISH THAT NEVER SWAM
Mungo restored life to a killed robin, started an extinguished fire by praying over a hazel branch (now depicted as an oak tree), possessed a bell reputedly given to him by the Pope used in services, and saved a Queen from certain death by catching the fish that had swallowed her ring and thereby clearing her name. Perhaps more relevant and worth recalling is the care St. Mungo bestowed upon the impoverished people settled Clydeside, even serving them home-brewed ‘liquid bread’, a sure forebear to the St. Mungo we brew today.
Our work at WEST cannot be credited to any miracle, but we still think it apt to honour this legendary man with what we consider to be a legendary beer. Our St. Mungo is a hybrid between a Bavarian Helles – pale lager – and a northern German Pilsner. It is crisp and refreshing, light yet full bodied, simply a perfect complement to any meal. We’re not the only ones who think so, the DLG (German Agricultural Society) awarded the beer a Gold Medal in 2009 and its praises have been sung recently in Ireland as well. St. Mungo is also currently the only beer we bottle, a fact that may be changing in the bright near future. Our new expanded brewery will greatly increase production of St. Mungo, and we hope to broaden our distribution of its pure tasty goodness to further corners of the globe!