Just Fucking Make A Good Porter First…

A link to a Vanity Fair interview with Shaun E. Hill of Hill Farmsted Brewery just popped up in my Twitter timeline. I first became aware of Shaun E. Hill after I’d had a pint of Grassroots Broken Spoke Blackened IPA in Ma Che Siete Venuti A Fa’, Rome; I had to go and find out more information about the beer as it was so good. Anyway, back to the article, it’s really quite an interesting read, especially this quote, which struck a bit of a chord.

A lot of brewers now go straight from home brewing into making a chili-chocolate chipotle porter or whatever, and it’s like … well, just fucking make a good porter first, and understand what a porter is instead of trying to re-invent it.

I’ve only managed the four all grain homebrews so far, and they’ve all been pretty similar. The main reason for this, is that by and large, I don’t know what I’m doing. Only by doing it again and again can I begin to understand the process of making good beer. Rather than trying to run before I can walk, lord knows I’d love to do some mad sour cherry and chocolate nib aged Imperial Russian Stout, or massively complex coffee infused Imperial India Pale Ale, but at the moment, I’m just trying to learn how to brew something that’s drinkable.

Once I can brew consistently, that’ll be the time to break out the madness and do something a bit dafter. Until then, I’ll be brewing a few different styles of beer, mainly to try different types of grains and hops, but mainly to learn the process of what’s actually involved in creating a good beer. Next up will hopefully be a hop burst, with all the hops coming in the last ten to fifteen minutes. After that, I’ll be pushing my kit to the limits to see what kind of brew length I can get for a US style IPA.

Meanwhile, I’ll keep the mad ideas confined to my dreams…

4 Replies to “Just Fucking Make A Good Porter First…”

  1. I’ve tended to go the other way…I’ve made a very nice cherry stout and I’ve currently got a slightly smoked red porter on the go due out next week. Every time I brew I change or upgrade something equipment after spotting something I could do better with the previous brew. Once I’m happy that I’ve got the equipment in a position to give me some really good consistency I’ll try and do some more standard beers repeatably well.

    1. If you don’t have consistency though, how do you know if it’s the recipe or the process that’s produced your duff beer…? For example, if you’ve never brewed a Russian Imperial Stout before, then you’re probably not going to get it right at the first time of asking, so why fuck about with it? Shirley you want to make it a few times, so that it’s as good as you’re going to get it, and then fuck about with it…?

      Don’t get me wrong, I think this is very much a case of each to their own, I’d just rather have consistency in my process. So that when I feel that I’m producing beers that I’m happy with, then I’ll start to fuck about with them.

        1. I’m not advocating that we all stick to brewing boring brown beer. Just that a lot of us should learn to walk, before we attempt to run… 😉

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