A beer lover's guide to craft beer
Two words: craft beer – an artisanal beer carefully developed flavour with surprising combinations.
Beer connoisseurs know - much like fine wine, not all craft beers are created equal. Whilst water, hops, malt and yeast may give you beer, every brew is affected by it’s the brewing process, its own unique ingredients, where it was produced as well as the fermentation time.
Here’s a list of interesting facts that will set you on your way to becoming a beer aficionado at your local bar.
1. It’s purely crafted masterpiece
So, how different is it from the mass-produced frosty golden brew you used to down during your varsity days? Unlike mass-produced beers, craft beer uses a significantly larger percentage of the real stuff – such as malt grain without the need to substitute with products like rice, corn and ascorbic acid. If you think about it, it all comes down to hard work and dedication and, all this contributes to a craft beer’s delicious flavour.
2. Malt – the soul and colour of craft beer
The colour of craft beer is directly linked to its malt content. When it comes down to it, malted grain is the single most important ingredient that influences the colour of the beer. Two chemical reactions that most affect the colour of beer is The Maillard Reaction (the browning effect) and caramelisation. The darker malt colour is obtained by kilning malted barley, whilst caramelisation gives it a caramel colour and flavour.
3. To age or not to age – that is the question
Much like a bottle of wine, the flavour of craft beer is significantly improved by the aging process. Whilst a clear majority of beer styles are best served fresh, there are certain craft beers that respond favourably to aging – changing the flavours and aromas. To preserve the brew’s quality during the aging process, craft beer is stored in a dark and cool spot that remains a constant temperature.
4. A glass a day, keeps the doctor away
You read that right, there are health benefits linked to drinking craft beer. Surprisingly, research has shown that craft beer has more health benefits than red wine – as it contains soluble fibre, vitamin B9, a range of antioxidants as well as a rich source of silicon which is used to counter osteoporosis.
What’s brewing next?
In the spirit of working together, Clarens Craft Beer Festival and SA on Tap have joined forces to bring you a craft beer collab festival. Working together to create unique masterpieces, local and international breweries offer visitors the opportunity to enjoy over 150 premium brews, ciders and gins – all paired with a selection of tasty Jozi street cuisine.
Meet and greet the brewers, indulge and learn about the incredible array of aromas and flavours that are synonymous with craft beer, all whist your family enjoys live performances by Gangs of Ballet, Majozi, Will Rayz, Charlie Finch, Stuart Reece and Jaryd Smith. The festival will be taking place on the 11 and 12 of May 2018 at Joburg’s premier entertainment venue, Montecasino.
Give your taste buds a sense of adventure - visit www.untappedfest.co.za to book tickets.