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Exceptional Beers



Dr. William Okell, a Cheshire surgeon, founded Okell’s Brewery in Castle Hill, Douglas, Isle of Man in 1850. He was a man of singular drive and ambition: by 1874 Dr. Okell owned many of the pubs on the Island, had convinced Tynwald (the Isle of Man’s parliament) to create an act ensuring the purity of beer brewed on the Isle of Man, and had also built The Falcon Steam Brewery just outside Douglas

Adulterated beer was a widespread problem in the 1800s so the Manx Pure Brewing Act was warmly welcomed. But the clean taste of Okell’s beer also raised suspicion at the time and Dr Okell felt forced to take out an advertisement in a local newspaper to explain how his steam patent design improved on traditional furnace techniques, ensuring the “cleanliness and total absence of burnt flavour and acrid bitter so often complained of by the public”.

Good beer was not the only legacy of Dr Okell. He built a house for himself and his family in Douglas with a beautiful walled garden where water from a stream would be used by the brewery when it was relocated nearby. After Dr Okell’s death, his widow kindly donated the garden to the Manx people as a public amenity. It was dedicated to the Manx National Poet T E Brown and remains a public park to this day.

Okell’s Brewery, with its patented new steam-powered design, was originally built at Falcon Cliff, just outside Douglas. It was later moved to Castle Hill, above the site of the modern-day Villa Marina. After Dr Okell’s death in 1892, the brewery was taken over by his son William and in 1946 it became part of Heron & Brearley. Today Okell’s beer is brewed at a purpose-built modern brewery at Kewaigue, on the outskirts of the city.

The Manx Brewing Purity Law

No brewer shall use in the brewing, making, mixing width, recovering or colouring, any beer or any liquid made to resemble beer, or have in his possession any copper as, Coculus Indicus, Nux Vomica, Grains of Paradise, Guinea Pepper, or Opium or any article, ingredient, or preparation whatever for, or as a substitute for malt, sugar or hops.



Brewery Tours

Our brewery tours are famous, especially for typically ending up in the Okell’s in-house bar.

You must get in touch if you want to visit the source of Pure Pleasure.

We run our tours on Wednesday nights 7pm – 9:30pm. They consist of a tour of the brewery which takes 30-45 mins and then finish in the Brewery Bar where you have ample time to sample the various Brews we have available.

Tours are available for groups of min 6 and max 20 and cost £10.00 pp