In mist shrouded days of yore (ISBF 2014), I first met 3 people. They were sat on adjacent tables in the food area at St Sebastian’s. They were beer lovers, chatting away, getting along famously. I was just amazed that this bearded bloke from Coventry and this couple from Liverpool travelled to Salford.
Yes. They were beer lovers. But I wonder if they’d ever dreamed that they would end up brewing together?
Those three people were Les O’Grady (now Partner and brewer at Neptune Brewery), his lovely wife Julie and Carl Marshall (now brewer at Twisted Barrel). The “luck of the draw” bringing together 3 people who have not only been with ISBF from the start, but who have – mostly – actually sat together through each year’s Saturday lunchtime session.
Due to unforeseen events (last year) and unfortunate timing this, I have been unable to travel to Maghull to brew with Les. Something I hope to rectify next year!
But, the mighty Mowgli (aka The indefatigable @Leggywolf) hotfooted West to get his brew game on. I’ll make a blogger of him yet!
Take it away Lee….
“I was back in the land of the Maghull Magician for another brewday. This time it was for the #ISBF4 collab between @neptunebrewery and Twisted Barrel @twistbarrelAle.
Les told me his ideas for this beer when we were at the Marble Arch for the launch of the Ladies That Beer marble collab beer, and I couldn’t resist going over and seeing how such a beer would be made.
I arrived to find Karl @ThaBearded1 breaking up the hops ready for today’s brew and boy were they smelling good no wonder really with Sorachi Ace being used today (That should make Linda smile – Ed).
We got the mash on the go which was mainly Pilsner malt with a small amount of wheat malt.
Whilst this sat for a while to get all those sugars out the grains we got to work on the interesting stuff. Chopping some Thai herbs!!
This was going to be a Thai Saison so not only would this be Les’ first saison but a Thai spiced one too!
Between me and Karl we chopped up some Galangal, lemongrass chilli and cracked some black pepper! The smell of all these herbs were amazing and I was really intrigued how these would work with the beer.
It was now transfer time and I could put well honed skills of switch presser into action again. I definitely hadn’t forgot over the week between brewdays which switch to press.
I then quickly learnt that if you want to dig out the Mashtun when Karl is around you’d better jump in quick as he loves to dig em out. He jumped straight in and made short work of it!
After the wort has been boiling for an hour we added the first of the Thai herbs.
With two more additions added before the end of boil it was time for those Sorachi Ace hope to be added at flameout!
Then when everything was transferred over it was time to pitch the Belle Sasion yeast.
Les will be adding a load of lime zest next week to add to the Thai flavours.
This was a really fun days brewing with great company and this beer is really going to be one to check out.
But to check it out first you’ll need a ticket to #ISBF4.” (Hint : Click the hyperlink!)
Cheers Lee. I have a strange feeling that I’m going to enjoy QCing* this!
Massive thanks to our good friends at Neptune for hosting this collab and for Carl for travelling up from Cov (and for some awesome posing!) And Lee. For his expert pushing of buttons!
*Having a large glass full…..