By Scott Wright

INNIS & Gunn has underlined ambitions to grow its portfolio of brewery taprooms as it reported strong trading for the Christmas period, boosted by moves to revamp the three outlets.

The beer firm, which is raising cash to build a £20 million brewery in Edinburgh this year, said sales across its three venues increased by a combined 16.2 per cent in December to £322,325.

The growth came on the back of a 35 per cent rise in festive covers across the outlets, which are located in Glasgow, Dundee and Edinburgh.

Sales of Christmas gift vouchers and Innis & Gunn Brewery Fresh Tank Lager increased by 42% and 17% respectively, the firm said.

Innis & Gunn said it was looking at sites in Scotland to expand its retail portfolio this year, noting that it also planned to open a taproom at the new Innis & Gunn Brewery in Edinburgh in 2021.

A crowdfunding campaign for the project is still live, and as of yesterday had raised £2.38m, or 79%, of its £3m target on the Seedrs platform.

Steve Drew, retail operations director at Innis & Gunn, said: “Our festive dining and gifting campaign has been a

great success.

“It’s clear from both the sales results and amazing feedback we’ve received from customers that the refurbishment programme of our bars has been a hit with our existing fans and also recruited a raft of new supporters.

“These are results that the team can really be proud of and are testament to the hard work they put in every day. We’re looking forward to welcoming even more of them through the doors in 2020.”

Innis & Gunn revealed in December that it had identified a location at Heriott-Watt University’s Research Park in the west of Edinburgh, home to the International Centre for Brewing & Distilling, for its brewery. It said it would be the first major brewery to be built in Edinburgh for 150 years.

Unveiling the plans, Innis & Gunn said the brewery would include a visitor centre and offer tours.