Two pairs of brewing students from the International Centre for Brewing Science (ICBS) at the University of Nottingham have embarked upon an ambitious undertaking as the research project for their MSc in brewing science and practice.

Each Cuckoo Collaborative team (pictured) has developed a beer and brand and are brewing it with a local brewery.  It will then be launched in pubs in and around Nottingham and Derby in early July.

Cuckoo CollaborativeThe first team is working with Black Iris Brewery, a much-loved Nottingham brewery known for taking established beer styles and applying an innovative twist.

The second group has teamed up with the award-winning Derby brewery Dancing Duck, which has a reputation for crafting exemplars of classic ales.

Cuckoo Collaborative with Black Iris have made a lime and coriander hefeweizen called Laima’s Luck. The name refers to a Baltic goddess of fortune who would often take the form of a cuckoo. Her sacred tree was the lime tree and her job was to determine your fate.

Expect zingy citrus flavours balanced with spice to conjure up powerful imagery of mystique and intrigue.  To keep up-to-date with news and information from Cuckoo Collaborative with Black Iris, follow the team on Facebook and Instagram

Cuckoo Collaborative with Dancing Duck have developed a beer that aims to showcase British hops. Their beer, Jester, is made with the support of the British Hop Association.  This support has led to the acquisition of a new hop variety, not yet used commercially. Again, the team can be followed on Facebook and Instagram

The Cuckoo Collaborative project is the grandchild of Natural Selection Brewing (NSB), now in its seventh year at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. Natural Selection is itself a collaboration between Stewart Brewing and ‘the Watt’ and was created by Steve Stewart and David Quain.

After four rounds of NSB, David left Heriot-Watt to join Nottingham and, not surprisingly, brought the idea with him. First up — zerogravity — with Castle Rock Brewery resulted in a delicious altbier, Alternate Universe, that hit bars in and around Nottingham last summer. This parent project has been re-imagined this year as the Cuckoo Collaborative, bringing the story up to date.