British beer brands are responsible for some of the most popular beers in the world. British beers include the leader of the craft beer revolution, Brewdog, alongside classic names like Buxton Brewery and Newcastle Brown Ale.
Much like any major brand, the famous British beer brands we know today have earned their place in the public eye, by investing in an identity to resonate with their target audience. Each iconic British beer business has its own distinct image and personality.
Today, we’re going to be taking a closer look at some of the most memorable beers from the UK, and the logos they’ve used to capture the attention of their customers.
The top British beer brand logos
British beer brewing is a long-standing tradition throughout the country. Beer was already popular among the Celtics, long before the Romans showed up over 2,000 years ago. Plus, Ale was widely regarded one of the most common drinks in the Middle Ages.
Over the years, countless memorable beer brands have appeared throughout the UK, each with their own unique focus and appeal. Some beers seemed specially designed for the British “pub life”, while others were intended for home drinking.
Let’s explore a handful of some of the most popular beer brewing companies in the UK, and their logos…
A pub retailer and brewer, Greene King was first founded in 1799, and is based in the Bury St Edmunds region of Suffolk, in England. More than just your standard British beer brand, Green King is responsible for a variety of hotels, restaurants, and pubs.
Launched by Benjamin Greene, the official “Greene King” brewery sells a number of popular drinks, both within Greene King pubs and restaurants, and through third-party retailers.
The Greene King Abbot Ale is probably the best-known drink by the company, followed by the Greene King IPA, IPA Export, and St Edmunds golden ale.
Focused on the history and heritage of the brand, the Greene King logo is a simple wordmark with the image of a crown and two arrows crossed over it. The logo also draws attention to the original founding date of the brand, and the location of the headquarters.
Easily one of the better-known brands in the world for craft beer, Brewdog is a multinational brewery and pub chain based in Scotland.
As famous British beer brands go, this one is somewhat controversial, as not everyone will connect Britain and Scotland as being part of the same entity.
BrewDog produces a huge range of ales and lagers, and even had the best-selling craft beer in the UK throughout 2019 (Punk IPA).
One of the things making Brewdog so compelling as a beer brand today, is its approach to sustainability. The company is committed to carbon negative production.
The Brewdog logo is a memorable emblem-style image, featuring a dog shape within a black shield. The shape of the dog is designed to look almost like an upside down moon. This image is fun and quirky, with an element of history to it.
The Meantime Brewing Company is a brewery in Greenwich, London, in England, currently owned by the larger Asahi brewery corporation. Founded by Alastair Hook in 1999, the Meantime Beer Company has become an extremely popular brand throughout the UK over the years.
Alastair Hook was even named Brewer of the Year in 2015.
Meantime brews a range of 12 beers (at the time of writing), focusing specifically on British and European traditional drinks, like Porters, Pale Ales, Lager, and India Pale Ale. The Meantime Brewing Company also uses some of the more unique bottles in the market.
Focused on tradition and prestige, the Meantime Brewing Company logo is historical in style. The design is inspired by the Harrison Clocks found in the Royal Observatory, and features a bold, crafted ‘M’ that is often found in a vibrant color.
The clock image reminds us of the time zone for the UK, Greenwich Meantime.
Founded in 1994, in St Minver Lowlands, Cornwall, Sharp’s Brewery was created by Bill Sharp. The company now belongs to Molson Coors and is best-known for the flagship ale Doom Bar, which appears regularly in restaurants and pubs throughout the UK.
Doom Bar accounts for around 90% of all of Sharp’s sales, although the company does offer a range of other ales, such as the Sea Fury and the Cornish Coaster. Doom Bar bitter was the first official sponsor of the Cambridge and Oxford boast race from 2008 to 2012.
Visible on all major Sharp’s beers, including Doom Bar, the Sharp’s logo features a simple serif wordmark, with clean edges, and a white font. The design is clean and sophisticated, ideal for a reputable beer brand.
A family-run business from 1845 to 2019, Fuller’s Brewery was launched in the west of London, and now belongs to the beverage giant Asahi.
The Fuller’s Company is responsible for a huge selection of popular British beers today, including London Pride, and the drinks are exported to around 80 countries worldwide.
The Fuller’s London Porter has won a number of awards, including the World’s best standard porter. Fuller’s 1845 has also won awards, such as the CAMRA champion bottle beer in 1998.
Today, many customers are familiar with Fuller’s not just for its British beer logos, but for the unique designs of the bottles Fuller’s sells.
Brimming with history, the Fuller’s beer logo features a golden griffin with its own barrel of beer, standing on top of a sign for the Fuller’s wordmark. The design looks highly illustrious and important, great for a company looking to demonstrate esteem.
An independent craft brewery and beer company based in Manchester, England, Cloudwater Brew Co is a relatively new brand. Established in 2014, the company began producing beer the following year, and quickly developed a reputation for high-quality products.
In 2017 and 2018, the Cloudwater Company was ranked among the best breweries in the world.
Cloudwater produces both award-winning beers, and a range of non-alcoholic sodas. The company also has a selection of brewery tap rooms in London and Manchester, and an annual beer festival. The Cloudwater Company is one of the fastest-growing British beer brands.
Cloudwater keeps things simple and modern with its logo. The design features the outline of a cloud, with several wavy lines beneath (to represent water). The overall design is easy to remember, and fantastic for a range of different mediums.
Another relatively young addition to our list of British beer brands, the Thornbridge Brewery was founded in Thornbridge Hall, in Derbyshire in 2005.
In a short time, Thornbridge has won over 350 awards, including the Gold Medal for the best black IPA in the world at the World Awards for Beer in 2012 and 2013.
One of the most popular beers in the Thornbridge lineup is the Jaipur IPA. The company has often been referred to as the first UK craft brewery. Today, the drinks from Thornbridge are distributed in more than 30 counties around the world.
Like many of the leading logos for the top British beer brands, the Thornbridge emblem is relatively straightforward. A sans-serif wordmark sits beside a monogram of the letter “T”.
The image is simple but distinguished.
Originally introduced during 1852, John Smith’s is one of the better-known British beer brands, responsible for producing a host of different beers, including “John Smith’s” bitter, which is the highest-selling bitter in the UK, and has been since the mid-1990s.
John Smith’s was produced by the founder John Smith, and the majority of its sales come from the extra smooth product, which has a special brewing formula to create a unique texture.
The John Smith’s extra smooth and original beer products are both produced at the Tadcaster Brewery, alongside a range of Heineken products.
The John Smith’s logo features the name of the brand in a curved design above a red magnet, which showcases the founding date of the company. The magnet refers to the name of one of the earlier beers produced by John Smith’s.
Newcastle Brown Ale
A brown ale produced in Newcastle upon Tyne, in England, Newcastle Brown Ale is one of the most famous British beer companies. Launched by Colonel Jim Porter in 1927, following three years of development, the beer quickly became a popular drink throughout the United Kingdom.
The beer underwent a resurgence in the 80s and 90s among students.
Newcastle Brown Ale is often considered to be a “working man’s” beer, with a heavy association with the industrial landscape. However, elsewhere in the world, the same beer has a reputation for being a trendy drink, common among younger people.
A kind of emblem, the Newcastle Brown Ale logo features a large star, with the image of a bridge from Newcastle in the middle. The name of the company appears in red, in a white oval around the central star.
Wellpark Brewery is a brewery in the Duke Street area of Glasgow, Scotland. Founded in 1740 on the back of the Molendinar Burn by Robert and Hugh Tennent, Wellpark is now owned by the C&C Group.
The Wellpark Brewery is best known for producing Tennent’s larger, which is the leading brand of pale larger in Scotland, and a popular choice throughout the UK.
Wellpark Brewery was originally known as the Drygate Brewery, and quickly became one of the biggest bottled beer exporters in the world. The company produces a huge range of beers outside of the standard Tennent’s larger, including Tennent’s Ember, and Tennent’s Light Ale.
The Wellpark Brewery logo features a large “T” depicted in red and gold, designed to represent the name “Tennent”. The name is both the title of the founders, and the most popular beer for the company.
While Beavertown might actually be the name of a location in Ohio, the Beavertown Brewery is one of the most popular British beer brands in existence today. This company has interesting origins. It was founded in 2011, by Logan plant, the son of Robert Plant, a singer with Led Zeppelin.
Beavertown produces a wide range of “craft” style beers, mostly in the form of IPAs. However, the company also has a wide range of special seasonal beers available on rotation. In 2020, the organization launched a new 500,000 hectoliter capacity location.
The Beavertown logo is designed to be as eye-catching and quirky as the company itself. The image features the name of the company, with a skull in the “O” of the word “Town”. A larger “beaver” skull is also evident in the middle of the logo.
Old Speckled Hen
A premium beer belonging to the bitter collection from the Morland Brewery, which is now owned by the Greene King brand, Old Speckled Hen appeared for the first time in 1979 in Oxfordshire. The creation of the beer was designed to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the MG car factory in 1979.
Old Speckled Hen is one of a range of beers created by the Morland Brewery, which was originally introduced in 1711, making it one of the oldest breweries in the UK. The company produced drinks like Monarch, Viking, and Fergusons, among others.
Still featuring the original wordmark for the “Morland” company, Old Speckled Hen has an iconic, and traditionally styled logo. The design uses high-class serif font to demonstrate an air of sophistication and heritage.
Founded in Camden, London during 2010, Camden Town Brewery is now owned by the larger Anheuser-Busch InBev Corporation. This company was created by Jasper Cuppaidge, the grandson of Laurie McLaughlin, who ran his own McLaughlin Brewery in Australia.
Camden Town offers a range of all-year beers, including the popular “Hell’s Larger”, which is the signature for the brand. Other beers include the Flue Faker Larger, the Inner City Green Larger, and a range of additional “occasional” beers, brewed in limited batches.
Featuring the image of a chimney top from Camden in a circular emblem, the Camden Town logo is a symbol paying homage to the history and source of the company. The use of red and white in the logo demonstrate ideas of purity and passion.
An English brewery established in 1865 by John William Cameron, in Hartlepool, County Durham, Cameron’s is the largest independent brewer for the Northeast of England.
With a massive brewery capacity of around 1.4 million hectolitres, Camerons is one of the oldest industrial locations in Hartlepool, and one of the region’s largest employers.
The Camerons Brewery produces a wide selection of cask conditioned ales, as well as bottled and keg ales. The most famous beer from Camerons is Strongarm, which was first introduced in 1955. Other regular beers include Trophy Special, and Bullion Gold.
One of the most memorable beers belonging to a British beer brand, Camerons features a red lion to help connect it to the heritage of England. The company also uses a bold word mark, with the subtitle “The North East brewers”.
Founded by two friends, Lee Grabham and Wayne Smith in 2016, Brew York is a local craft beer company in Britain, rapidly gaining attention in pubs and stores around the world. All of the beer produced by the company is created within York, some in the original city center brew house.
Brew York is unique in its ability to offer a wide range of ever-changing beer experiences and flavors. New products are regularly introduced, and inspired by a range of different things, from Judi Dench (the Judi Quench beer) to Barbara Streisand (Rhubarbra Streisand)
Unique and eye-catching, the Brew York logo combines eagles and lions placed together in a unique collection of geometric shapes. The emblem also features the name of the company, written in bold, serif-style font.
Based in Yorkshire in the United Kingdom, Vocation was created by John Hickling, an IT worker for a bank who decided to quit his job and start brewing his own beer in 2008.
The company has since won a wide range of awards, and Vocation beers are now available in a variety of supermarkets and stores across the United Kingdom.
The Vocation Brewery was first opened in 2015 and started with a single member of staff in a rebuilt chicken shed. Today, the company creates around 10 million cans per year, and has around 60 members of staff.
The Vocation beer logo is eye-catching. The bold name of the company appears in all-capital letters using a bespoke cut of the Hebden font that is based on signage found at train stations in Yorkshire.
Northern Monk is an independent brewery, based in the region of Holbeck, Leeds. According to the company, it was inspired by the northern surroundings and the history of “monastic” brewing practiced in the region for hundreds of years.
The organization believes in continuing to preserve a number of the old-fashioned techniques used in the UK.
Committed to producing a wide selection of high-quality beers, the Northern Monk brand has introduced a range of different tastes over the years, including IPAs, and sour beers, with unique mixtures of berries and fruits.
The Northern Monk beer logo features the image of a monk wearing his hood in a large circle, designed to look like a compass. The arrow on the top of the compass is highlighted, to indicate the direction of North.
The Bass brewery was officially founded in 1777, by a man named William Bass, in Staffordshire, England. The company mainly produced Bass Pale Ale, which quickly became one of the highest-selling beers in the UK.
By 1877, Bass had become the largest brewery worldwide, delivering an annual output of one million barrels. The pale ale was exported through the British empire.
Over the years, Bass took over several different breweries, and merged with the Charrington United Breweries Company in the 1960s to become the largest UK brewing brand. Today, the company is responsible for a range of drinks, including Draught Bass, and Bass Ale.
Simple but effective, the Bass breweries logo features the name of the company in creative cursive font, showcasing the innovative nature of the business. A large red triangle is also a significant part of the Bass logo, with the tip pointing upwards to indicate progress.
Celebrating British beer companies
There are plenty of amazing British beer brands out there to explore if you’re looking for inspiration for your own brewing company.
Many of the British beer companies mentioned above use several common components in their logo, such as the name of the business, and the date when it was originally founded, to symbolize heritage.
Of course, there are some variations among British beer brand logos. Some of the more modern organizations have experimented with a wider range of geometric shapes and unique designs to help set themselves apart from “older” beer companies.
Don’t forget to check out our other Logofiles for more interesting insights into some of the most memorable brands in the world.
Fabrik: A branding agency for our times.