Wednesday 30th October 2019
The second meeting of WEHomebrew proved even better than the first. It was great to see even more people turn up to enjoy what turned out to be some great beers. Prior to the meeting Paddy was kind enough to give a mini-tour of the brewery for members who hadn’t been round before; and also members who just love looking at big shiny tanks full of ale.
Then it was time for the science. Matt from Windsor & Eton brewery delivered a brilliant introduction to the science and art of mashing. Starting from the fundamentals of what the maltster and brewer are working with through to the implications temperature, water, pH and time can have on your finished beer product. It was a real grounding and I’m looking forward to looking at the next stage of the brewing process – wort boiling & hops next month.
After the science it was time for the drinking. We had half a dozen beers to assess and discuss and while the majority of the beers were dark – fitting in well with the coming seasonal weather and early nights – we kicked off with a cool Steampunk looking growler full of a light 6 day old beer that was ready to drink. Fermented warm using Kviek yeast this was a great introduction to Norwegian farmhouse yeasts and their potential in terms of fast turn around and robust fermentation profiles.
Wild hops, wild fruits, chocolate and espresso coffee were the added bonuses tasted in the following beers – something for everyone and a great show of what variation there can be in similar styles.
We ended the night in a great discussion over the potential causes of a phenolic / medicinal taste found in a beer. A lot of learning and some things to take away to remedy this. This bit is exactly what the club is about – fixing problems so we can make great beer.
As mentioned I have set up a facebook group for any discussions / questions / photos of your kit to share – link to that is here : https://www.facebook.com/groups/WEHomebrew/
Looking forward to next month already where hopefully we’ll see a few versions of the SMaSH recipe here http://www.wehomebrew.club/2019/10/02/smash-recipe-for-hops-experiment/ where we can compare different hops and how our individual processes differ.