Brewery Director Lewis Parkes got to work this week on an extra special one off brew. Using Fuggle Hops homegrown and picked by hand from his very own allotment, the recipe for a brand new and traditional 4.0% ABV Amber Ale took shape. Taking the hop vines on Monday morning and picking the flowers from them Monday afternoon, the brew began the very next day – making it the first ale using homegrown green hops to be brewed onsite here in the brewery’s 13 year history!
The fresh Fuggles were added at the aroma hopping stage, after boiling the wort. This clearly impressed Chief Brewer Ollie Cuddy who remarked “Wow, they smell fantastic. I hope that smell comes through into the beer. It will be incredible”.
The recipe for this new, yet to be officially named beer (we say officially because it’s being affectionately called “Fuggle Rock” in the Brewhouse) resonates of a quintessentially English brew. Using Goldings hops with the Fuggles we have added 5 different malts – pale, rye, oats, crystal and rolled barley to give it a truly traditional English Ale flavour.
Lewis says “we’ve been experimenting quite a bit this year, introducing more innovative beers like the Jilt and, more recently our Country Garden IPA. This beer is a humble beer, brewed using traditional ingredients to a recipe that nods to one of centuries old. It’s great to experiment with different flavours but I’m very excited to create a beer using hops grown on my allotment – just as brewer’s will have done throughout history”.
If the Fuggle beer is a success, we might look to introduce a traditional green hop beer once a year. Hopefully you’ll all get a chance to try it. We have brewed 700 litres which equates to about 15 firkins so it really is what we’d call a small batch special!
The beer will be available in 3-4 weeks time so keep an eye out for further details on how and where you can get it and more importantly… if we’ve come up with a better name than Fuggle Rock!