Sunday 9 December 2012

Would Alexander Buckthorn Please Stand up?


WIGIGs are a lot of work. On top a lot of other work. And hence I have not had as much time as I would like to update you with progress. Maybe my imminent nervous breakdown will afford me more time.
Project Wheatcore is all but sold with a good deal of pleasant feedback received. Well done James. Total Citra disappeared without touching the warehouse floor!

The Sea Buckthorn and Alexander seed pale ale is dosed up with the sea buckthorn juice and seeds and is conditioning nicely in CT12. It was made by Melissa and I using best pale ale malt, low colour cara and a little crystal to an OG of 1045. Hops were Pilgrim, Cascade and Aurora, all chosen for their fruitiness rather than their hop notes.
If you are into disgusting flavours I would strongly recommend Sea Buckthorn juice. This forager-friendly superfruit does not taste at all super. Rather it smells like bad feet and/or builder’s armpit and tastes like battery acid without the sweetness.  We have added it in parts per million concentration. High in vitamin C it should serve to sharpen the beer flavour and provide protection against oxidation.  Alexander seeds are a lovely spice, similar to red peppercorn but with a lovely savoury citrus edge. With the sprinkling I have put in this beer it’s unlikely they will feature strongly but may play a supporting role.
We have decided to call the beer Alexander Buckthorn after the famous beer evangelist who brought lager to Europe in 1247 as a message from god. Buckthorn was also credited with the invention of the spatula and the bob hairstyle. A truly great man.  

Our Alexander will be released next week….

My latest WIGIG is conditioning in East London under the painstaking care of Jim Wilson from Tap East. It is a Weisse bier with an OG of 1065 hopped with cascade and cluster in the kettle and dry hopped with whole Citra in the cold tank. Also in the cold tank we are adding a blend of rose flowers and dried apples to counter wheat-based beers’ tendency to have a stodgy and grainy texture.

Scaling brews down from 26,000 litres to 400 litres is a crazy novelty and at times I struggled to get my head around the being Gulliver in Lilliput. Under Jim’s control the brew went through with more success than some I have done on my own brewery. This beer will be available at Tap East before Christmas.