Posts Tagged :

hops

1024 682 Savannah

Issue No. 9

A Note from the Chris’

Two Families, One Delicious Brew

Mireille & Head Brewer Sean at Houblonnierre Lupuline

We’ve been talking about hops a lot recently. Some would say too much. However, it’s harvest season and we are in the beer business after all.

About nine months before we opened the business, a good friend of ours, Marc, knew that we were working towards opening a brewery and mentioned a high school friend of his that was growing hops and needed help picking them with their first harvest. Now, I’ll be honest, I’m not sure if we thought it was going to be a legitimate operation or simply someone with some hops growing up the side of their house. Regardless we took Marc up on the offer and went and met with his friend Mireille, armed with beers for the occasion of course.

2017 Harvest

Upon arrival at the farm on L’Isle aux Allumettes, we were pleasantly surprised to be greeted by Mireille, her brother Charles, Charles’ wife Lyne, their children, and rows and rows or hop vines growing in their field.

Marc Bru (different Marc) from the now Square Timber Brewing Company was present and brewing up a beer on a home brew system in their garage which reinforced that the beer scene was alive and well.

With beers flowing, we were graciously welcomed and given the tour of the farm before beginning to pick some hops which back then, had to be done by pulling down the vines and picking each hop flower by hand. I distinctly remember seeing Mireille’s hands which were stained green and yellow from the lupuline oils in the flowers. From what I understand, this is still an issue today.

We left the hop farm invigorated by the opportunity to use locally grown hops in our beer and will always be thankful to our friend Marc for introducing us. This is just one of the ways that he drastically impacted our lives before sadly passing away about 18 months ago.

Our relationship with Mireille, Charles, Lyne and their children has grown along with their farm and it’s always a pleasure to host them in one of our breweries. In fact, tonight we’re opening up the Riverside Brew Pub to host Lyne’s 40th birthday celebration. We continue to almost exclusively use their hops in our beer and it’s been incredible to see them grow alongside us and maintain the ability to keep up with our growing requirements/your growing thirst.

These kinds of relationships define our business and we look forward to celebrating many more of them to come!

Head Brewer Sean & Mireille

 

Houbloneirre Lupuline Hop Yard

Cheers!

Chris Thompson & Chris Thompson

 

 

 

 

 

 

Emily Santi Photo (www.emilysantiphoto.com)


Brewery News

Toronto KLR93 Launch

On the 18th of this month we will be launching our new KLR93 Kolsch Style Ale in the big city of Toronto. This launch is being hosted by the Lucky Clover Irish Pub on Lower Simcoe Street and provides everyone attending with a chance to win some amazing prizes. And yes, the Killer himself will be there enjoying his very own brew.

We like big trucks and we cannot lie

Our beer has now become so widespread across the province that its time we graduated to a big boy/girl truck. Coming this month we are getting our very own 36′ truck to spread our delicious brew to more of you. I call shotgun!

 


Beer 101

Pumpkin Spice Latte Beer

By Head Brewer Sean

This is the season for pumpkin everything. And why would beer not be on that list? Pumpkin beer can be delicious but with one extra spice or too much it can go to gross in no time. This month lets discuss some tips and tricks to making a great pumpkin pie beer.

First, lets talk pumpkins and gourds. You would think using pumpkin is the only way to make pumpkin beer but there are many different gourds that can lend a great pumpkin pie taste. Some are easy to get and others can be hard to find gems. In the Ottawa Valley, pumpkins are easy to find so that is your best bet in this region but don’t have a one track mind when it comes to brewing. Butternut squash can be another great gourd to use that will lend some nice sweetness to the beer. From the USA there is Blue Hubbard Squash, Grey Ghost, and Jarrahdales but they are harder to find. All of these will lend differing flavours and can be a good way to stay unique in this style of beer.

Now what do you do with the pumpkin/gourd once you get them? There are really two ways of using them. One is to cut them up fresh, scoop out the seeds, and put them through a processor to shred them up. Then they are ready to add right to the mash. This will give you a nice subtle pumpkin flavour. If you want to go to the extreme you can cut them up and roast them in the oven (190c for an hour or until they look well caramelized). To take it that much further (as pumpkin spice beers always do) you can coat them in spices and brown sugar before you roast them to lock in those pumpkin pie flavours. I suggest adding roughly 1lb per 4litre of final wort. This will get you a lot of flavour.

Last is the spice. You can add as little or as much as you want. Some of the good spices you can use (in no order of preference) are nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, ginger and clove. When it comes to spice addition you need to be light handed or this beer can go from nice and light to cloying and horrible. I add a smaller amount of spice to the pumpkin at roasting and then  the same amount at the end of the boil. Once fermentation is done you can taste the beer and add more spice if needed to taste. This way you are certain you have the flavour you want in the beer without going overboard.

Pumpkin Beer Recipe

19 L /5 gallons, extract with grains and pumpkin; OG = 1.048; FG = 1.012; IBU = 19; SRM = 6; ABV = 4.6%

Ingredients:

1.1 kg (1.25 lbs.) Muntons Extra Light dried malt extract
1.6 kg (3.5 lbs.) Northwestern Gold liquid malt extract
0.22 kg. (0.5 lb) Crytsal 60 malt
0.22 kg. (O.5 lb) Crystal 120 malt
2.3–2.7 kg (5–6 lbs.) pumpkin (cut into 1/8th)
Cascade hops (60 mins) (1.0 oz./28 g of 7.6% alpha acids)
3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
Dried ale yeast (US-05)
0.75 cup corn sugar (for priming)

Step by Step:

Bake Pumpkin slices with half the spices dusted on top for 1hr at 190 °C or until they look golden brown and soft . Heat 2.8 L (0.75 gallons) of water to 73 °C (163 °F). Place crushed grains in steeping bag and steep grains at 67 °C (152 °F) for 45 minutes. When pumpkin is ready, add chunks to grain bag and add cool water (to maintain 67 °C (152 °F) temperature). Combine grain and pumpkin “tea,” dried malt extract and water to make 9.5 L (2.5 gallons) of wort. Boil for 60 minutes, adding hops at the start of the boil. Add liquid malt extract and remainder of spices with 15 minutes left in the boil. Cool wort and transfer to fermenter. Top up to 19 L (5 gallons) with water. Aerate and pitch yeast. Ferment at 21 °C (69 °F).

All-grain option:

Replace malt extract and 0.45 kg (1 lb.) 2-row malt with 3.6 kg (8.0 lbs.) 2-row pale malt. Bake Pumpkin slices with half the spices dusted on top for 1hr at 190 °C or until they look golden brown and soft. Mash grains and pumpkin chunks at 67 °C (153 °F) for 60 minutes, stirring occasionally. Boil for 90 minutes, adding hops with 60 minutes left. Add remainder of spices with 15 minutes left in boil. Ferment at 21 °C (69 °F).


Cooking with Beer

Beer Braised Chicken

By Sous Chef Ben

Best Paired with KLR93
Ingredients

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

All purpose flour, for dredging

2 tbsp. olive oil

12 oz KLR93

1 cup pearl onions, chopped

1/2 pound small fingerling potatoes, halved

2 tbsp. whole grain mustard

2 tbsp. brown sugar

4 sprigs fresh thyme

3 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped fine

1/2 lb bacon, chopped

1 tsp garlic, minced

 

Method

Add chopped bacon to sauce pot and cook until fat renders. Add garlic, onion, and olive oil.

Dredge cubed chicken in flour, removing excess. Add to sauce pot and sear all sides.

Add remaining ingredients and simmer on medium low heat until potatoes have softened.

Season with salt and pepper. Remove sprigs of thyme and serve.


Events

WBC Oktoberfest
October 7

Come out to the Lakeside Brew Pub for our very own Oktoberfest celebration. Live music, pretzels, games, and of course our seasonal brew Das Bier. Tickets are on sale now in our retail stores or on our website.

Germania Club Oktoberfest
October 14

Music, dancing, and all the German food you could eat. Head over to the Germania club for their annual Oktoberfest. First keg is tapped at 1:45pm. For more details look here.

Toronto KLR93 Launch
October 18

See above in Brewery News for details.

Ottawa Valley Craft Beer Festival
October 21

This local craft brew fest is being hosted at the Best Western in Pembroke. Come out and see/taste 12 fantastic local breweries and enjoy what Ottawa and the Valley have to offer. For more information and tickets look here.

WBC Halloween Party
October 28

Dust off those costumes and wigs. We will be hosting our annual Halloween party at our Lakeside Brew Pub in Cobden. Stay tuned for more details.


Questions from Friends

Peter asked:

Can you make beer, like champagne, in a “method tradionel” that means natural carbonation, rather then adding CO2 afterwards?

We answered:

Hello Peter,

Great question! Yes you can. There are a lot of breweries that carbonate their beer naturally. Especially in Germany where you aren’t allowed to force carbonate beer. The way you do this is by adding sugar at packaging. The residual yeast left over in the beer will consume this sugar and create CO2 naturally in the beer. The more sugar you add, the higher volume of carbonation you will get. Homebrewers use this all the time when bottling at home. The reason we do not use this method in the brew house is to control CO2 volume in the beer and speed up packaging time. It would take us an extra 2 weeks to naturally condition the beer. Breweries like Sierra Nevada have naturally conditioned their packaged product for years and they do a great job at it.

Thanks again for your great question!


We want to answer your questions about anything from the beer, the brewery, the boys or whatever else is on your mind. Due to the high volume of questions though, we won’t be able to post every one, but keep your eyes peeled in case yours makes it to the front page.

If your question does get picked you will become the proud owner of a swag bag full of WBC goodies. So ask away!

*Questions from Friends is for general questions in the areas listed above. For personal inquiries please use thebreweryboys@whitewaterbeer.ca

683 1024 Savannah

Issue No. 8

A Note from the Chris’

Ninety Six Employees but a Team of Thousands

How does a business that started with three unpaid river bums get to a point where that team is now 96 employees strong? Damned if we know but that team is in reality actually many thousands strong! James, Chris and I started this adventure nearly 5 years ago, brewing in what would later be the bathroom for the Riverside brew pub. We chose that location for 3 reasons.

  1. Our brew system was small enough to fit in it
  2. It was easy to heat during the winter
  3. It had very good ventilation

On any given brew day in the Summer it would reach temperatures of 60C. Walking into the room almost felt like physically walking into a wall of heat. A typical day involved brewing from 6am to 1pm and then going out and doing deliveries while someone else did the reverse. Ryan would have been our first employee. He was a high school co-op student and fit in well as he also wasn’t being paid. He later became an employee and entered the brewers program in Niagara (one of the highlights of our five years). From there it was a slow growth of the brew team who also acted as sales reps, delivery drivers, handyman/women, etc.

The next department to grow was our sales department. The other Chris and I continued to act as sales reps (or beer pimps as I preferred to call myself) as we hired our first and second sales reps. It is only recently (as we have grown capacity wise) that we have grown this team to 11 employees out on the front lines. Despite the pub(s) we are a brewery first and foremost.

When our pub at Riverside opened this is when our family really grew. The number of cooks and servers needed to run even a modest pub the size of Riverside is impressive. 7 days a week, 12 hours a day, means a lot of people have to be ready to jump into the fray sometimes with only a moment’s notice. Add the fact the we source local ingredients and cook from scratch and you might begin to see their importance.

The opening of the Lakeside Brew Pub at the end of October 2016 did not really affect things much as many of those staff from Riverside just came over to the Lakeside location. However, it was at this time that we decided to bring our deliveries in-house and move away from third party delivery companies. This was to improve quality of service and allow us another touch point to interact with our bar clients. We deliver to bars as far south as Windsor/Sarnia and as north as Thunder Bay. These boys move thousands of litres every day and need to do it with a smile as they represent the brewery more often than even the sales reps.

In March, we started brewing at the Lakeside location which was when we had to develop a packaging team. 7000L is a lot of kegs and cans to fill but first you have to clean them all. Add into this the Riverside Brew Pub and retail getting ready to open for the summer and before you know it you now have 96 employees.

Three river bums have done a lot of fun and great things over the last five years. However, the one I’m most proud of is having a team of 96 people spreading the Whitewater love. And none of this could have been without the support of the people and restaurants of the area. Thank you, and take a moment to reflect on what you’ve done in just five years. You’ve done great things but we have greater things to do.

 

Cheers!

Chris Thompson & Chris Thompson


Brewery News

Staff Raft Trip 2016

We’re taking a day for ourselves

Every year, after the Labour Day long weekend we decide its time to reward ourselves after a long Summer of steamy brewing days and loud and busy nights. Tuesday, September 5th both Lakeside and Riverside will be fully closed so we can have a staff trip down the Ottawa River and another loud night. We will be open for regular business on Wednesday, September 6th.

Riverside Closing for the Season

Have you ever noticed that our Riverside location is actually in an old dairy barn? Well its not just for show, and because of this it is actually quite difficult to heat when the temperature goes down. For this and other reasons we will be closing our Forester’s Falls Brew Pub for the season but will open back up in April of 2018. It’s been a great Summer folks and we will see you when the snow has melted. Or in Cobden whenever you want.


Beer 101

Hop on the New Crop

By Head Brewer Sean

It’s that time of year again when the new gorgeous hop cones will be picked and processed. For brewers, this is our Christmas as we get to use up our prior crop of hops and get the super fresh hops. Here at WBC we get 95% of our hops from Houblonniere Lupuline across the river on L’Isle-aux-Allumettes in Quebec. They supply us with all of our hops for Farmer’s Daughter, Whistling Paddler, Class V and Midnight Stout. These varieties are Cascade, Centennial, Magnum and Willamette. We also get some other varieties from them for our seasonal beers like Jacked Rabbit and Triple Eh’. We have found working with this local company to be the best decision we have ever had. They have the nicest staff and are very helpful with whatever needs occur.

Hops are the flowers that come from the hop plant. Hop plants are vine plants that grow long and tall. They can grow up to 20’ during the season. They grow like any vine plant twisting around ropes strung up on poles. As you can see in the picture above they grow very tall. Once the flowers are mature and the lupuline oils are in line with the needs from brewers, they are chopped down and picked. At this point they dry them and either package as whole cone or process through a pelletizer. Most breweries use pellet hops because they last long and you get better utilization from them. Here at WBC we use both whole cone and pellet hops. I’m sure if you have any other questions the fine people at Lupuline Hopyards would be happy to answer them. Either way we should all be happy it’s almost harvest time. Fresh hops for all!

*Photographs from houblonlupuline.com


Cooking with Beer

KLR93 Oriental Duck Sauce

By Head Chef Sarah

Best Paired with KLR93
Ingredients

1 cup plum sauce

1 tbsp. chili powder

3 tbsp. rice vinegar

4 tbsp. KLR93

1 tbsp. soy sauce

 

Method

Mix all ingredients together thoroughly.

Heat in sauce pan until reduced by a third.

Drizzle over pan seared duck breast or use as a dipping sauce for homemade spring rolls.


Events

Kingston Ribfest & Craft Beer Fest
September 8-10

Live entertainment, ribs, craft beer, and a kids fun zone. Fun for the whole family and free admission. And did I mention ribs? For more information look here.

Head for the Hills
September 16

Welcome to Georgetown, home of the Head for the Hills Craft Beer Festival. This isn’t just any craft beer festival though. This one day event is entirely volunteer run and benefits local charities. For more information and tickets look here.

Canada Army Run
September 17

This military inspired run is everything Canadian Armed Forces. 5k, 10k and Half Marathon are all still available to register for and when you hit the finish line, you’ll receive not only cheers, but one of our beers as well. Check it out here.


Questions from Friends

Barry asked:

Is KLR93 available in the LCBO?

We answered:

Hi Barry. While KLR93 is not yet available in the LCBO we will be applying in the next application window. It is likely you will see it in The Beer Store or select grocery stores as early as this autumn.  Cheers.


We want to answer your questions about anything from the beer, the brewery, the boys or whatever else is on your mind. Due to the high volume of questions though, we won’t be able to post every one, but keep your eyes peeled in case yours makes it to the front page.

If your question does get picked you will become the proud owner of a swag bag full of WBC goodies. So ask away!

*Questions from Friends is for general questions in the areas listed above. For personal inquiries please use thebreweryboys@whitewaterbeer.ca