Lerwick Brewery Website

Hello! I just wanted to let you know that the Lerwick Brewery website has finally launched!! I’m so, so excited to be part of this and I can’t believe we’re so close to launching our products too! We have our final bottle and label designs which you can see below, and I think they look amazing (I know I’m biased but they’re exactly the kind of thing I pictured way back when it was just an idea and words floating about).

 

We’re starting off with two kinds of beer, and have decided on the names 60 North, the latitude at which they were brewed and Skipper’s Ticket which refers to the license you need to drive (?!) a boat. We really want to focus on the fact we’re brewing in Shetland as it’s just such a fantastic place (see my previous Lerwick Brewery post if you want to read about my love for the island!). Both of the beers will be available in 330ml bottles and will be 4.8% and 4% ABV respectively. They’re also both free from isinglass so are suitable for vegans 🙂

 

We’ve suggested some foods that each beer will compliment as we feel that beer is a fantastic alternative to wine when having a meal. We also recommend the serving glass and temperature so you can really get the best out of them.

 

I’m going to hold off describing the taste of the products for now as I haven’t been able to taste the final recipes just yet (living in London does have its disadvantages!). However, there are full taste descriptions on the website…and they sound bloody delicious!

 

More info will be coming soon once we’re at the product launching stage, and once I’ve got my grubby hands on a couple (or 10) to try!

 

Image

Kapplerbrau

I recently came across the brewery Kapplerbrau (or Kappler brewery in English) and wanted to let you know about them. They are a small, private, family-run brewery and as you can imagine, the family element of their company makes me have an affinity for them. They’re based in the Bavarian countryside in Germany and focus on ‘quality not quantity’. Kapplerbrau are sticklers for Reinheitsgebot (or the Bavarian Purity Law to us non-German speakers) which insists that only beer, water, barley and hops are to be used in the production of beer. There has been a brewer on the site for hundreds of years and has been passed through four generations of the Wiedemann family to the brothers Hans, Toni and Max.

Their two most famous beers are the Export Hell and Hefeweisse which you can see pictured below.

 

Image

 

Export Hell is a bottom fermented export beer. It’s quite light in colour but full bodied and 5.2%. In the 2012 Beer Star Awards it received Gold in the Export category and I would definitely recommend trying it out.

 

Image

 

Hefeweisse is their wheat bear. As you can see from the photo it’s a thick, light, golden straw coloured beer. It pours with a thick, creamy head and tastes quite fruity. Like the Export Hell, it’s also 5.2% and bottom fermented. It’s also bottle conditioned which sits in line with their traditional ways.

 

Image

 

So far I only know of the following places that sell the two beers:

Glasgow:

Hippo Beers
The Cave
The Belle
Good Spirits Co.
Beer Cafe
 
Edinburgh:
Great Grog
Beerhive
Henderson Wines
Brauhaus
Villeneuve Wines
Appelation Wines
Provenance
Cloisters
 
If you get a chance to try these out or know of anywhere else that stocks them (especially in London where I’m now based), please let me know, I’d love to hear about it!
 
 

Lerwick Brewery!

As I may have mentioned in a previous post, I am currently doing the marketing for an up and coming brewery which is what inspired me to start this blog. That brewery has now begun to make beer! The Lerwick brewery was founded by my dad and his two brothers who all have a passion for beer. My family is from Shetland so we have decided to begin our company where our roots lie! Our brewery finally has the go ahead from building control and all the other permits and so we can finally begin the fun part – the brewing itself!

Because we are mainly focusing on the Shetland market to begin with, we have decided to start with a Pilsner style lager and an 80′ dark beer. These are the most popular styles in Shetland. Once we expand to the mainland, we are planning to introduce a variety of different ales into our product range.

Shetland has recently been in the limelight with the new Three dancing Shetland pony advert which is obviously fantastic news for us…the timing couldn’t have been better! Do you think he’s celebrating the launch of our brewery??

I think Shetland is an absolutely fantastic place and we really hope to promote it through our beers. The landscape is beautiful and the wildlife is incredible. I grew up here as a child and I didn’t really appreciate how lucky I was. I got to see orca whales, seals, puffins, otters and loads more animals regularly which most people are lucky if they’ll see even once in their life! There are also amazing beaches, albeit the weather maybe isn’t the best if you want to sunbathe, but if you enjoy nature and clean air, I definitely recommend visiting!

I have digressed slightly from the topic of this blog, beer. Because we haven’t started to sell anything yet and are still in the experimental brewing processes, I don’t want to give too much away. I’ll be providing updates on here regarding our progress because I’m so excited that it’s finally happening!!

In the mean time, please check out our facebook page 🙂

 

Brauhaus

I have recently moved to London but before that, I was a student in Edinburgh. Edinburgh really is a lovely city and I absolutely loved it. It has an amazing range of bars and pubs and you can always find somewhere that perfectly fits the mood you’re in.

One of my favourite pubs in Edinburgh has to be Brauhaus. I actually only became aware of this place in my last year at university which is such a shame! It’s a little bit out of the way (105 Lauriston Place – I’ll include a link to a map at the bottom), but well worth the detour to get there! It has a huge range of beers from all over the world and by far the best I’ve seen in Edinburgh. They even have my favourite – Aecht Schlenkerla, which is a huge winner for me! It can get a little busy during peak times but only because it really is a great little place. The staff are really friendly and clued up on the beer they sell. They’re very keen to help you pick something new and give good advice!

Here’s their Twitter, and their location on google maps.

So if you’re ever in Edinburgh, pop in past and let me know if you loved it too!

Samichlaus

I know it has been a long time since I last posted and this particular one is very overdue but I’d like to take you back to a couple of weeks ago. Back to Christmas! Doesn’t it seem so long ago now? That week filled with meat, rich sauces, cakes, chocolate and alcohol seems like a lifetime ago from the current detox diet most of us are on! Since it’s now snowing, lets cast our minds back to that festive morning and pretend we’re there…

Image

What better way to celebrate Santa’s visit than with this little bottle of festive fun which is 14% ABV! It’s only brewed once a year on the 6th of December (Saint Nicholas’s Day!) so relatively rare and definitely worth picking up if you ever see it. It’s aged for 10 months before bottling and is actually a lager rather than an ale.

Although the taste is really nice, I kind of struggled to finish the whole bottle because of the richness and definitely couldn’t manage a second. Probably a good thing considering the alcohol content! It’s well suited to being a Christmas beer since it’s sweet and dark, perfect for a sipping during the annual family monopoly game in front of the fire. You are definitely aware of the high alcohol content and also the fruitiness and because of this, kid of reminded me of a Christmas pudding with brandy.

Happy (very belated) Christmas one and all!

Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier – Marzen

…in English…Original Schlenkerla Smokebeer – Marzen. I think this is my all time favourite beer (so far, I have plenty more to taste!). The name is quite a tongue twister and I really need to get someone who speaks German to teach me how to pronounce it properly. Since I don’t have to pronounce anything on here, it gives me the perfect opportunity to tell everyone how great this beer is!

I love the taste of smoked things; cheese, ham, bacon so when my Dad brought me this home to try, I was quite excited. There was definitely no disappointment! It is quite smokey tasting, but not overpowering. It’s also quite carbonated so it isn’t too heavy which is another good thing.  I would really recommend drinking this with BBQ ribs, or anything that has been barbecued because the flavours together are phenomenal. The fact that it’s carbonated but also dark and flavoursome means that you could drink this any time of year, whether that be on a summer’s day or in the middle of winter tucked up beside an open fire.

This is the only smokebeer I’ve ever tasted or come across in shops. I would really like to try the other varieties the Schlenkerla brewery produces, and any other types. If you can recommend me any and where to get hold of them, it’d be much appreciated!

Marketing Beer for Women

Marketing is important for all companies, but I find the marketing for beer very interesting. There are over 1,000 craft brewers (small, independent companies) in the UK alone so how does another one on the scene stand out? This is my job. Even if the company brew the most delicious beer in the whole world, it will be lost amongst a myriad of other cleverly designed bottles.

 

I’ve been doing a lot of research on the beer industry and I’ve come to the conclusion that I think there is a huge gap in the market for beer aimed at women. In the U.K. only 13% of us ladies drink beer whereas this figure is 36% over the water in Ireland! Molson Coors – the corporation behind Coors lager has even invested £396m in setting up a sister company (very appropriate wording!) – the Bittersweet Partnership, whose job is to specifically research and produce beer targeted at women. The end products were these….

 

 

There are 3 flavours available; clear filtered, crisp rosé, and zesty lemon.  Now. I don’t know about you, but to me, these don’t really look like beers. They look like someone has ripped the ‘Bacardi Breezer’ label off and stuck something a little classier on. Beer companies have experimented with various flavourings added to their beer, for example, I’ve tried chocolate, chocolate orange, peach and cherry. However, all these were still very much identifiable as beer and there would be no way of confusing them with any other product. There is a huge mixed consensus with regards to these Animee products. Some people like their attempts to change the stereotypical image of beer drinking women being lager ladettes into one of more sophistication and class, but others feel patronised. I must say, I can’t help but fall into the latter category.  Since we know they are specifically targeting these products to females, it is like they are assuming that they have to trick women into drinking beer by disguising it as something else – an alchopop. In order to encourage women to drink more beer, we shouldn’t be tricking them into it, we should be changing how we perceive beer. Instead of the current perceptions of old men in wooly jumpers, stag dos and ladettes downing pints of the stuff, we should aim to change people’s perceptions of beer as something for everyone. As a woman who wants to be treated as an equal to men, I don’t want manly things to be changed to make them ‘women – friendly’. That is just plain patronizing! I want to be able to enjoy the same things. Therefore, in order to increase the percentage of women drinking beer, I don’t think it’s the product itself that needs to be changed, but the way it is marketed.

Williams Bros. Grozet Ale

The Williams Bros are a micro-brewery based in Alloa, Scotland. I’ve tried a few of their beers and I think they’re very good, but I thought that Grozet should get a special mention. It is a light, crisp ale which is flavoured with gooseberries (hence the name!) and is perfect for summer! The gooseberries give it a lovely refreshing and citrussy tatse, and is comparable to elderflower. It has a 5% ABV and comes in 500ml bottles which is quite a lot for a small girl like me, but I think it’s a great alternative to a fruit cider, perfect for drinking outside on a sunny day.

I really liked this beer and would definitely repurchase!

Link to the Williams Bros website: http://www.williamsbrosbrew.com/

The difference between ale and lager

When I first started getting into beer, I found all the different terminologies very confusing. To begin with, ‘Beer’ is an all-encompassing term which can be used to describe both ale and lager. Now I’ll try to explain the difference between the two main sub-categories of beer – ale and lager.

 

Ales are made by using a kind of yeast that rises to the top during fermenting (Saccharomyces cervisiae), hence the name top-fermenting yeast. Their fermentation period is generally shorter than that of lagers, often a week is sufficient, and the yeast needs a warm temperature to ferment. They are generally not chilled at any point during the process and most ales are served at room temperature. They tend to have a stronger taste than lagers and the colour range can vary from light and golden to dark browns.

 

Lagers use a type of yeast which sinks during fermentation (Saccharomyces Uvarum) and needs a cool temperature to ferment. Their fermentation process also takes longer than ales, around 3 weeks or more. They can also vary in colour, light kinds being the most popular but there are also dark lagers e.g. Dunkel. They have a crisper and less fruity taste. They are always served chilled and are the most popular and mass produced types of beers in the world.