So, I know I dont really talk much about my passion for brewing my own craft beer. Since there was always an abundance of ‘real ale’ available to buy in the UK, I think my first foray into homebrewing with my brew buddy was more a case of trying it for the sake of just wanting to try making it. I wasn’t even aware of what craft beer was at the time. For us, real ale was the greatest thing out there, and we were going to make our own. I remember our first brew like it was yesterday. It was, looking back on it, hillarious. After visiting our homebrew store and spending a couple of hundred pounds on a mash tun, a couple of plastic boilers and other beer making related utensils, a big bag of crushed grains, a packet or two of hops and some yeast we were certain of our ability to produce an award winning English ale. The guy that ran the homebrew shop did warn us that it will take us all day if we have never brewed all grain before. He even suggested trying a kit beer to begin with, but that was cheating to us. It was the proper way or no way. So with a guarantee from the shop owner our first brew will fail we set off to my house, and by 10am we were like a pair of over enthusiastic 10 year olds on christmas morning, rigging our improvised gravity fed brewery up in my tiny kitchen. Using the kitchen bench for the hot liquor tank, a stool for the mash tun. And the boiler perched securely on the kitchen floor. How could this fail we thought!! Anyway, cut a long story short, 13 hours later there we were, tired, ratty, and stood out in the garden at 11pm trying to cool 23litres of wort down to a pitching temperature for the yeast. Needless to say it was a complete disaster.
Nowadays though we now operate out of waynes ‘state of the art’ brick built shed, using the same three vessels we originally bought. Only with a few essential extras, like a wort chiller!! We now make beer in around 5-6hours from start to finish. Recently we discovered our love for genuine craft beer and it’s our mission to create delicious craft beer of our own.
Our last two brews have been a most certain success. We have brewed a most delicious IPA. Packed full of delicious tropical aromas and fruit flavours from simcoe hops.
The result is delicious and everyone thats tried it are blown away. Needless to say our passion and drive has gone through the roof and determined to help educate and teach people about the joy of true craft beer, we have given ourself a 12 month plan to hopefully turn our beer making into a business.
So you can expect more posts on our homebrewing of craft beer shenanigans from now on, as that is what is going to take up most of my time. Of course I’ll still be posting the odd review or two of great beers i get to try. I hope you enjoy.
Im not normally one to go into a full on rant, but quite frankly, I couldn’t be more annoyed at how slow and pathetic this country of mine is at truely getting on board this so called craft beer revolution. Why isn’t it being made more available? Other than Brewdog, there is no craft beer on our supermarket shelves other than what is imported from America. I want to see the mass amounts of microbrewery beer on our beer shelves to be true craft beer, not the same old boring malt overdosed bitters, milds, brown ales and golden ales. Dont get me wrong. I dont mind the odd one, but come on. Other than the pretty but typically boring old man type labelling theres not a lot to tell them all apart. Its as if the directive to the brewer was clairty and head retention. Completly overlooking the small details of flavour and aroma. Come on microbreweries of the Uk. Put some hops in your beer for heavens sake. Give us some flavour. And dont any of you realise that there are more hops available around the world. You can try something new world for a change instead of the usual Kent Goldings, or First gold. Which by the way pack about as much flavour as a bucket of cigarette butts. Dont they realise that people want more flavour in their beer. I recognise blending hops for bittering compared to blending them for flavour, aroma and bittering is a completly different challenge. Hence why beer that tastes amazing is known as ‘craft’ beer. So get crafty. I beg you. Look at Brewdog. They claim to use 40 times the amount of hops compared to the majority of uk microbreweries. Look at the success they have. Its not just the hip image and branding that makes their beer popular, its actually because its un fucking believably good beer. Take a lesson from them. And give us some other options. Dont get me wrong there are exceptions to the rule on this rant. I have a love for a good handfull of real craft breweries in this country. The Kernal, Alechemy, Meantime and Tiny rebel to name a few few. You all know who Im talking about. Some of my favourite microbreweries, Blacksheep for example,who make really wonderful real ales. I feel a brewery of this nature could and should be producing a top class high hopped IPA and give us something different to the norm,something thats slaps you around the face in hop flavour and aroma.
My brew buddy and I probably use more hops in our 5gallon brews at home than some of the bigger renowned breweries use. So come on. Pull your finger out. And dilute the shelf full of malty brown water and fill in the spaces with something a little more crafty.
Thankyou for visiting my blog. In which I hope to share my experiences of fabulous beers, discussing flavours, aromas and appearances among all other aspects of beer. The craft beer scene is growing rapidly. Following the trend over the pond in the USA, people of the Uk are beginning to demand complex hop filled beers and changing the trend of warm flat ales and the bearded old man reputation that came with it. Beer is becoming hip, trendy and more importantly demanded. Which in my eyes is a truly fabulous thing.
Now im no expert or experienced blogger. I’m your average thirty something working/middle-class family man. I just happen to truly love beer and wish to share it with as many people as i can. So forgive my atrocious grammar, my terrible choice of vocabulary and basically disastrous writing style. For I am not here to seek accolades. I merely want to share the joy of craft beer, and so I shall.
I will begin my first review with a beer that is setting the standard in the uk beer revolution. A beer that smacks you in the face with punchy hop flavour, aromas and literally wakens your mind to what real craft beer is. So stay tuned for the next post.
I look forward to any response or feedback from anyone. So don’t be shy.