Our Ingredients

Many of you are fascinated by our flavoursome ingredients,
so here is a brief dissertation on them.

The major difference between the two types of beer – ale and lager – comes down to the type of yeast used in the fermenting process.

Ales make use of “top fermenting” yeast strains, which means that the fermentation takes place at the top of the fermenter at warm (18-22° C) temperatures. Lagers, on the other hand, make use of “bottom fermenting” yeasts that ferment at the bottom at cooler temperatures (5-10° C).

When we create a new beer, we consider bitterness, sweetness, colour and ABV which is the alcohol percentage (%).

From time immemorial, beer has always consisted of three standard ingredients:

  • Barley
  • Yeast
  • Water

However, with just these three ingredients, beer would be sickly-sweet and dull, so brewers have always added flavourings such as heather, flowers, spruce tips, borage, bog myrtle, herbs or spices.

It was not until the 15th century that brewers discovered hops, and beer, as we know it, was born.

Hop flowers contain resins which impart bitterness and aroma and, as a bonus, act as a preservative – extending the life of the beer.

Barley

Although wheat, rye, oats, millet, sorghum, rice and corn have all been used for brewing, barley is the preferred grain for beer. But the starch in a grain of barley isn’t ready to be fermented into alcohol, so the barley is generally converted into malted barley, or “malt.” The process of malting involves soaking the barley, allowing it to germinate, and then stopping germination with heat.

We get our barley from the UK, Germany and Belgium.

Barleys have great names like Maris Otter, Cara-Pils, Munich and Belgian Biscuit.

Hops

We get our hops from the UK, Europe, America and New Zealand.

There are 160 varieties of hop in the world but the best are what are known as the four Noble hops:

  • Hallertau
  • Saaz
  • Spalt
  • And ‘the prince’ – Tettnang

They come from the Czech Republic.

The hops we use are Tettnang, Simcoe, Chinook, First Gold, Amarillo, Perle, Cascade, Columbus, Challenger, Citra, Sorachi Ace, Bobek, Willamette, Aurora, Motueka and not forgetting Fuggles.

Yeast

How does yeast work? When it is added to a sugar-rich solution, it immediately begins to consume the sugars and create more yeast. In doing so, this metabolism produces waste products: carbon dioxide (which gives beer its fizz) and alcohol!

As the yeast continues its work of producing more yeast, the alcohol level of the beer rises until it becomes toxic to the yeast, which then becomes dormant. We draw off the yeast and recycle it into fresh brews.

Before  they understood its scientific properties, English brewers acknowledged the blessings of yeast by calling it “Godisgood”.

Pilsner is a type of lager originating from the Czech Republic and derives its name from the city of Pilsen. It is lighter in colour and has a stronger “spicier” flavour than standard lagers. Our pilsners, Arctic Fox and Laughing Wolf, are exciting and flavoursome best sellers.

Our Founder, Luke, and our Master Brewer, Iain (one of a select number of Master Brewers in the UK), who, between them, have 45 years of brewing experience, use the finest ingredients and apply the greatest dedication to craft our varied and award-winning beers which are now enjoyed by thousands of people every  day.

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