Clansmen David Moore and Chris Miller were attending the Foodex Tokyo exhibition with Craft Beer Clan in March, and met up with the PandaBrew Beijing Founders who were visiting Japan to explore ideas and opportunities. David Moore, who spent 13 years in Asia, latterly in China, made a quick connection with the Chinese team.
David then invited Kurt Xia and Pan Dinghao, co-founders of Panda Brew, and Chen Zhengying, Panda’s head brewer, to come to Scotland to do some collaboration brews and explore export opportunities.
The Chinese trio visited Edinburgh, the home of Scotland's own pandas, and enjoyed trips to Stewart Brewing and Pickering's gin.
The group were also lucky enough to meet and enjoy a whisky tasting with whisky writer and film star Charles MacLean before taking a trek up Arthur's Seat.
At Stewart Brewing PandaBrew Head Brewer Chen was reunited with his Heriot-Watt Classmate Craig Scotland, who had been friends and fellow students at the world famed Heriot Watt ICBD in 2013.
They produced a new recipe Scotch Ale at Stewarts before the PandaBrew team worked with brewer Jake Griffin to produce new to world IPA at Drygate, both prototypes for future collaboration brews. They also spent time with the founders of both breweries Steve Stewart and Scott Williams.
Craft Beer Clan were delighted to make the connections between the companies and to have some fun with PandaBrew, who are pioneers in craft brewing in China, with a growing portfolio of 7 bars and distribution to 47 Chinese cities.
Clansman David Moore said: "The trip couldn't have come together better - great fun with the PandaBrew team, two classmates from Heriot Watt from across the world, two great innovate collab brews, great insights about both the Scottish and Chinese craft beer market and most of all great potential for future collaboration. Watch this space."