In The Beginning...
The seeds of what would eventually become Top Rope Brewing were sewn in late 2014 when Ben and Neil met for the first time at a Liverpool based homebrew club. Despite being complete strangers at the time, they sensed a mutual understanding of sorts (possibly related to the tattoos and facial hair) and proceeded to drink beer together.
A few months down the line, they noticed that after each hombrew club had finished, they were frequently staying behind in the bar, drinking and talking about late 90's professional wrestling, another shared interest.
This friendship eventually progressed towards collaboration brews, with both guys bringing their own strengths and ideas to the table, as well as valuable second opinions and critique. The first of these collaborations (a very early draft of what would eventually become Overkill IPA) helped the Liverpool Homebrew Club triumph in a hard fought brew off against their Manchester based counterparts, a result which suggested that maybe, just maybe, there was the potential to take things to the next level.
Fast forward a few months and the decision was reached (quite possibly while drinking) to take the plunge and start a brewery. The discussion next turned to names; thinking back to all those nights spent talking wrestling, Top Rope seemed like the obvious choice. In wrestling, throwing yourself willingly to the mat from the top rope is described as "high risk offence", the ultimate risk vs reward, putting your body on the line in order to achieve your goals. This summed up the situation perfectly, this was the ultimate plunge being taken to achieve the ultimate goal (the brewing of delicious beer). Names were thought up, recipes were developed and (lots) of bits and pieces were ordered.
Shortly after this epiphany, Ben and Neil managed to win 3 out of 5 categories in the Brewdog Liverpool homebrew competition. This served as both a great acid test for future brewery recipes, as well as a wonderful sendoff to the world of homebrewing which had provided this wonderful opportunity. With recipes, artwork and (most importantly) bad wrestling puns all in place, it was time to step into gear.
It was time to brew beer...