Thursday, May 27, 2010

Bottling and brewing

Last night I got my IBA (india brown ale) bottled (44 bottles YAY!) and I brewed a belgian wit beer.

What is an IBA you ask? Well to answer that, I first have to explain the story of the India Pale Ale that is so popular here in California. See back when the British colonized India, one of the requirements of the government was to provide beer for the troops. Unfortunately when they tried to ship the pale ale of the time around the cape of good hope at the southern tip of Africa, and back up to the colonies in India, the beer had spoiled. They needed to find a way to make a beer that would last the trip. Fortunately the answer was close at hand. Hops, one of the main ingredients in beer, is a natural preservative. Also higher alcohol content would allow beer to last longer. So they upped the ABV, and added lots more hops and BOOM, the beer survived the trip and India Pale Ale was born.

But Brown ale was popular at the time in England as well. Who's to say that all the British in India just wanted Pale ale? This is where I start to tweak with history. Lets say an enterprising brewer developed a malty brown ale that would survive the trip as well. The result would be a hoppy, high alcohol brown ale, and that is pretty much what  I brewed!

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