52 brews is riding on the crest of an international media wave. Thanks to Mark Dredge, my new best friend and godfather to my future children, the 52 brews story has been featured on a Dutch blog and Radio 2 with more exposure in the pipeline. On Tuesday next week the Oz and Hugh programme on which I give a masterclass in Cornish pasties and taste Heston, Jellyfish red and the Cardamon Wheat will be shown on the Beeb. Needless to say my blog is getting more hits than a Cardiff housewife after Wales lose to England in the 6 nations.
It’s a bit of a shame that the final flourish of the 52 brews has to combine two brews in a single week. There is always a concern that I won’t be able to give them my full attention. But as (distastefully insert suicide bomber’s name here) would say, it’s better to go with a bang rather than a whimper. It’s not such a bad time to do it really. People always assume that breweries are insanely busy at this time of year due to brewing the beer for Christmas. In actual fact at the moment we are brewing for the rather less than busy January. That said at our prevailing growth rate and with bottle stocks to recoup after a focus on cask, no weeks are that far from insanity.
I apologise in advance for the boring uncle Brian joke in the next sentence (and the previous reference to domestic violence after rugby matches). When I first saw the name damp-frau-chbier in the suggestions an image of wet German ladies sprang to mind. That says more about my mind than my understanding of German and its beer styles. Dampfbier direct translation is steam beer. A more accurate description of the beer is a weissbier without any weiss. The steam reference comes from the German view that 21C is a dangerously warm fermentation temperature. The rauch bit is obviously the smoked malt. To add an interesting twist, instead of the German weissebier yeast this beer will be fermented by the beautifully fruity Belgian wit yeast. Interesting?
Malt: Pale malt, smoked malt
Hops: Saaz and Styrian Goldings
Yeast: Belgian Wit