This is where I will try to post, as often as I can, on beer topics that are related to my beer, the beer I drink, and my beer education.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Beer School Days 1 to 3

I have decided to start off by bringing over a couple of posts from the brewing section on bucket:
Day One: Beer class has officially started I never thought the day would approach, in which I would actually enjoy school. Its great, and more importantly, the professors (and professoras) are awesome. There are currently only 12 students in the program.
Yesterday was the first day, where we received the typical orientation and syllabus, and a large stack of books (17 to be precise). Then a brewer from Sierra Nevada, a graduate of our program, gave a small presentation while we sampled his newest seasonal, an IPA made with only European ingredients, which was really good without being overly hoppy.
After lunch we toured the campus, the library, the lab, and visited both of the campus brewing systems.
Gotta run, time to start day 2, sweeeet!

Day two: Today was fun too. A brewery tour, a lecture, and sensory evaluation (or tasting session, or palate training, or however you want to put it). First, she had us taste straight samples of bitter, sour, sweet and astringent. Then we blind tasted beers that demonstrated those attributes. Fun stuff. Apparently the palate is the most receptive of flavors in the late morning just before lunch. Who knew?
And Andy, yes, only European ingredients, and he said the main malt they use for that brew is Marris Otter, which is a pain because its so hard to come by. He said he needs to place his order right now for next years delivery of the Marris Otter malt for the IPA.

Day three: Today was an eye opener on what 6 hours of lecture can be like. Whoa. Same professor all day too. If he did not give us 3 short breaks and a long lunch, I probably would have fallen asleep several times. We covered most of the background biology and chemistry that we should need over the next 4 1/2 months, with a fair amount of emphasis on the terms that relate to brewing (i.e. enzymes, sugar, starch, water, yeast, minerals, vitamins, subtrates, carboxyl and other alcohols, etc.). By the end, the entire class, including the professor, was completely burned out. So, to reward ourselves for the hard work, we walked to the bar at the back of the classroom and poured ourselves a beer or two.
Did I mention the classroom is on the top floor of a brewery? Http:// We do not get free beer or food at the brewery, but they were kind enough to install two complimentary taps in the back of the classroom, and they fully stock the cabinet with pint glasses and German beer steins. Right now the Marzen and the Light Lager are on tap.
Of course, as fun as that can be, after only one beer with the class, I came home to have a beer with my lovely wife who was making pizza, and who is wildly supportive of my continued schooling. Thanks.


Blogger Andy said...

Just awesome.

4:34 PM


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