You get some pretty good beer competitions at the moment and while you might win a case or two of delicious beer, Camden Town Brewery’s latest in collaboration with the Craft Beer Rising festival is a whole other level. This blog post is my entry…
Having been a home brewer for many years (around 12) and recently moving to all-grain kits, the idea of making a beer at an actual brewery is something of a dream and bucket list thing for me. This competition involves imagining the beer, spending a day brewing and branding it with Camden and even seeing it get served at the Craft Beer Rising festival to thousands of attendees.
It might seem like it couldn’t get any better, but somehow it does!
Following the festival, the beer will be available in Camden’s two bars and all profits will go to charity – amazing!
What’s the beer called?
At the moment I’ve named it ‘Ryes & Shine’ which hopefully needs no explanation.
What’s the beer like?
As you can tell from the name, the beer features rye grain, not just barley (the majority will be Pilsner malt). It’s an ingredient I’ve really got a taste for recently, partly because of rye whiskey such as Bulleit Rye. There are some decent rye beers around such as Beavertown’s 8 Ball, but they are still fairly few and far between. They’re also typically IPAs made with rye or ‘Rye-PAs’ but my beer is a rye saison.
I think the traditional style of a saison blended with the rye will result in an interesting beer. I really want the spicy, earthiness of the rye to sing and it will also bring slightly sweet notes and fruitiness making it ideal for the colder weather we have at the moment. It should also bring around a warmer Amber colour, like a sunrise. A saison with more of a malty backbone is the base but it doesn’t end there.
The beer needs hops as you would expect and I’m thinking of sticking to the familiar Goldings for bittering and I’m hoping a blend of Sorachi Ace and Cascade hops will do nicely for aroma and some dry-hopping. The Sorachi giving it familiar characteristics like lemon and a bit of pepper and the Cascasde, probably my favourite hop, lots of juicy tropical fruit.
Modern saisons tend to be quite high in ABV, around 7%, but I think this beer will be more suited to something nearer the 5% mark. Incidentally this will help with the slightly limited time frame between the brew date and festival.
The yeast will be a typical Belgium strain and I think there’s room to possibly play around with the recipe and add something like orange or lemon zest. I’m totally open to tweaking things based on what the guys at Camden think.
I’m no design expert but I think the branding could take inspiration from the above image highlighting the rye and nodding to the colour of the beer.
That’s my entry for #YourBeerHere so fingers crossed!