I’d been out of Brewing University a couple of years when I tasted a beer that made a lasting impression on me as a brewer. It was beautiful, golden colored, crystal clear, lovely firm foam on top, and presented in an elegant chalice shaped glass, embossed with the beer name and with a gold rim around the top. It had a rich bready malt character, balanced with fine noble hops and a delightful Belgian yeast character. It cost a little more than the average best bitter but it looked to all the world like it was worth the extra. A beer to celebrate with rather than merely quench one’s thirst. You would order it in a cafe in Paris or Brussels, with a bowl of steamed mussels, or steak frites and feel like you were living like a king. The beer was Stella Artois and as you can tell it made a lasting impression. Fast forward to today and the beer itself is still around, it is still presented as a luxury beer with fine glassware and elegant faucets. The beer however has changed, and now sits alongside less impressive brands with a homogenous, uninteresting flavor profiles.
Bucking a recent trend in craft beer I filter this beer so that it always looks fantastic in a glass, particularly our very own decorated and branded chalice. the fantastic artwork was created by my cousin Mark Whitehouse, a graphic artist working in London. This is a beer designed to be served in a French Style bistro, But like every world class beer it works on many levels. If you’re thirsty it will satisfy, if you’re out with friends you’ll find it easy to drink. If you’re enjoying a meal it will complement your choice of food.
When I thought about what I wanted the beer here at Drop In to be I immediately thought about the beer that such an impression on me all those years ago. My beer would share that rich, bready, malty character from German pilsner malt. It would be hopped with America’s own noble hop; Cascade from Oregon. Four different times in fact as Cascade provides a superbly clean and pleasant bitterness that fades quickly. Its flavors and aromas are interesting and free of off notes like onion, diesel, garlic and dill. so many of the new popular IPA hops present. I then chose two strains of Belgian yeast as no single strain gave me exactly what I was looking for. Its important that this beer finish dry to enhance drinkability, and encourage you to order a second.