William tries tipple of Brains SA during brewery opening

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The Duke of Cambridge filled a cask and then pulled his own pint during the ceremony in Cardiff.

The Duke of Cambridge pulls a pint

Like thousands of Welsh rugby fans before him, the Duke of Cambridge prepared for a big Wales rugby match by sipping a pint of the famous Brains SA.

William pulled a pint of the iconic ale himself as he opened the new Brains Brewery in Cardiff.

After pouring the drink and taking a sip, the duke joked: “I shan’t neck the whole lot.”

William was given a tour of the new Dragon Brewery, where he met staff working on the production line.

The Duke of Cambridge with pint
William enjoys his pint (Richard Stonehouse/PA)

Head brewer Bill Dobson explained the production process to the royal as he showed him around the new multi-million pound facility.

During his visit, the duke filled a nine-gallon cask of Brains SA beer.


While watching the casks being filled, one started spraying ale and the duke, who was laughing, had to quickly get out of the way.

John Rhys, chairman of Brains, joked: “You did well to step back then.”

William also met apprentices from a scheme that aims to help people out of long-term unemployment by training them as chefs in Brains pubs.

The Duke of Cambridge visits brewery
The Duke of Cambridge narrowly misses being sprayed in beer (Richard Stonehouse/PA)


After being assisted in pulling the pint by Dave Lewis, the long-standing manager of the Brains-owned Lamb & Flag in Abergavenny, the duke unveiled a plaque to mark his visit.

He said: “I’m sorry you are all in on a Saturday, on a rugby day. I hope you all get to the TV later or the stadium.”

Following the visit, the duke was attending the Wales vs Ireland Six Nations match at the Principality Stadium as patron of the Welsh Rugby Union.

Brains, which was established in 1882, is Wales’s biggest brewer and moved to the new premises earlier this year.

The Duke of Cambridge unveils plaque
The duke unveils a plaque while officially opening the new Brains brewery (Richard Stonehouse/PA)

The Dragon Brewery, which is due to be fully operational in a few weeks, will produce more than 20 million pints of Brains beer a year.

The current Cardiff Brewery site next to the station is due to be transformed into the exciting Central Quay development, with work commencing later this year.

Mr Rhys, who is the great great-grandson of company founder Samuel Arthur Brain, said: “We were honoured to welcome the duke to officially open the Dragon Brewery.

“This marks an important step in our exciting plans to set up our proud, family-owned Welsh company to prosper in the long term.

“We look forward to launching new beers and building on the success of our thriving pub estate in the coming years.”

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