Beergembira: Craft Beer Tasting
Now we cannot see beer like we used to.
CRAFT BEER and beer tasting event is not common here in Jakarta, all the more in Indonesia. So, when Beergembira held a craft beer tasting workshop, Let’s Beergembira #10, it’s an opportunity that have to be taken to learn more about probably the oldest alcoholic beverage on earth.
The event was hosted by Ade Putri of Beergembira and Aaron Grieser of Beervana.
Before starting the beer tasting session, Ade and Aaron explained briefly about craft beer and basic knowledge about beer. Craft beer is beer brewed by independent brewers, who are working on a small scale and making beer using natural ingredients.
Aaron said no craft beer are alike. Craft brewers sometimes use radical techniques to create their own characteristic and distinctive flavors, sometimes even being creative by adding specific local ingredients to create different flavor.
For this workshop, Beervana brought products from Anderson Valley; Poleeko Pale Ale, Boont Amber Ale, Hop Ottin’ IPA, and Heelch O’ Hops Double IPA. Each of these beers has their own characteristic and we started from the lowest alcohol content then move one by one to the highest.
Poleeko Pale Ale which has pale yellow color is the mildest one, with 5 percent alcohol content and orange fragrance makes it the general favorite. But, it was completely different experience when we tried Heelch O’ Hops Double IPA. It has 8,7 percent alcohol content and the maximum score 100 points on IBU (International Bitterness Unite) scale. This one has strong taste and aroma which I like, but I enjoyed the bitterness when the beer is served cold. My favorite of all is the Boont Amber Ale (5,8 percent). It contains crystal malt that contribute unique iron smell and sweet caramel flavor.
Aaron also spoke of the importance of water in beer. Well, the basic ingredients to making beer are hops, yeast, and malt, but Aaron reminded us about the fact that beer contains 90 percent of water. So, if you have clean water with no chlorine and harmful chemicals but still contain traces of natural mineral, then you can make a good beer. Anderson Valley beer is one of the craft beer that has good quality water because of their geography advantage being surrounded by hills full of natural unharmed forest. This terrain create a pure and clean water which is perfect for beer.
After this workshop, I cannot wait to taste more craft beer in the future, not only imported beers but maybe from local independent brewers.
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