Altbier is Here!
It’s been a little bit since we offered an update as we’ve been hard at work on our historic 25th anniversary Altbier Collaboration Ale. The great news is it’s actually here! This picture shows the beautiful cans coming off the line a couple weeks ago: And here’s one of the proud ladies on the line as they watched their hard work make the rounds: Visitors to the...
So it’s been a few weeks that we have been back now, but our work on bringing the Altbier to fruition hasn’t slowed at all. We’ve spent a fair amount of time with the yeast samples we brought back with us. It took a couple of weeks of growing, plating, re-growing, and re-plating, but we finally got it to the point last Tuesday where we had a sufficient yeast population grown up...
Last Day of the Trip
Despite everything I said about our plans for today, it turned out to be much more adventuresome that was previously believed. We were up at a good hour to make our way to Timmermans. What an interesting tour. Our guide was an 80-year Scottish fellow named Bertie who had worked many years in sales for Timmermans and now runs tours in his spare time. Very knowledgeable fellow. The brewing equipment...
The Long Road Back to Brussels
It was an early morning today to get back to Zum Schlüssel in time to watch them skimming the yeast from the beer we helped brew on Monday. We arrived at the brewery at 6AM to find that they had already skimmed, transferred, and cleaned the first fermenting tub, which was to be re-filled later that day, and they were already collecting yeast from the second. I didn’t even want to ask what...
Altbier Collaboration Tour Photo Gallery →
Here’s the ongoing gallery of Gord and Bryan’s journey to Zum Schlüssel in Düsseldorf, via Belgium.
Last Day at Alt Skul
We got in to Zum Schlüssel a little later this morning, and headed straight down to the cellar to check out the beer we helped brew yesterday. We were greeted by the fabulous sight of the beer in high krausen—thick foam with rocky meringue-like peaks. The yeast was fermenting so vigorously that the foam was literally overflowing the tub, and the aroma it produced was intoxicating in...
Rinsing the goodness out of the malt in the traditional lauter tun at Zum Schlussel.
First Day of Alt Brew Skul
What an early morning. After a long adventure in Köln yesterday, we were asked to arrive at Zum Schlüssel for 7AM this morning (first brew mashed in at 5AM, so they were being kind). We spent a good portion of the morning with Dirk, the brewmaster at Zum Schlüssel, who explained a great deal to us about the Altbier market place in Düsseldorf, Altbier in general, as well as his brewery. ...
What a day in Koln
We got up early this morning for a hearty breakfast before a quick train ride to Koln (Cologne). There we met up with Heinz, a Koln native, and veteran of the beer market research industry in Germany. He was our guide today for a tour of the many different Kölsch offerings available. Interesting side note: Some time in the 1960’s all of the Kölsch breweries in Koln signed the Kölsch...
First night in the Altstadt
We made our way today from Brussels to Dusseldorf, with a couple of stops along the way. The first stop was at the 3 Fonteinen brewery in Beersel to meet with the brewmaster, Armand. We missed out on the blending that they had done the day before. Armand was quite proud of what he has accomplished however, and had many great stories to tell. The best of which was about the catastrophe that his...
Big day in Brussels (more or less)
Today we made a road trip to the Bosteels brewery in Buggenhout. Three wonderful beers there in the name of Pauwel Kwak, Karmeliet Triple and Deus. Deus was the most interesting in that it was fermented with champagne yeast and quite well spiced. The spicing regime was a secret, but we tasted a combination of orange, coriander, and possibly ginger and/or rosemary. The Kwak was the preferred beer...
First day in Brussels
Arrived around 9:00AM this morning local time (3AM for us). Picked up the rental and went straight to the Huyghe brewery in Melle (just east of Ghent). Filip was an absolutely wonderful tour guide for us and we definitely appreciate him taking time out of what is an obviously busy schedule. I can’t even fathom that they began construction of a new brewhouse in March 2011 and were running...
At Brewery Huyghe →
Enjoyed a great tour with Filip and sampled 6 of the 40 some beers they make.
Gord & Bryan's First Pint →
We’re are at Toronto Pearson killing time before our 5pm flight with one of our Premium Lagers on tap. Sadly this might be our last of our pints for a week or so, but you can check out what else we’re trying by friending us on Untappd!
Bags are packed