Friday, April 9, 2010

Brewer of the Week

This week's Brewer of the Week is based in Fredericksburg, here in Virginia.

Name: Lyle C. Brown (on the left of the picture)
Brewery: Battlefield Brewing Co. at The Pub

How did you get into brewing as a career?

Began as a homebrewer (26 years!) and BJCP Judge (Master rank). Won a silver medal in the GABF Pro-Am in 2008.

What is the most important characteristic of a brewer?

Passion for the beer. One a brewer’s wages, that is the only thing that will keep you going on one of those “everything went wrong in the brewery days” where you end up doing 14+ hours to brew one batch.

Before being a professional brewer, did you homebrew?

If so, how many of your homebrew recipes have you converted to full scale production? Yes. All but one of our recipes at Battlefield have been brewed as homebrew at least once before being brewed at the brewpub.

If you did homebrew, do you still?

Absolutely. And frequently.

What is your favourite beer that you brew?

Coral Sea Kolsch

If you have worked in other breweries, which other beer did you enjoy brewing, and why?

I have only brewed professionally as a guest brewer, and only at 2 breweries. I enjoy the higher degree of automation and sophistication of their systems.

Of the beers you brew, which is your favourite to drink?

Chancellor American Pale Ale

How important is authenticity when making a new beer, in terms of flavour, ingredients and method?

It depends on what your are trying to brew. If you want to brew a true to style traditional Kolsch style ale, you need to be as authentic as you can, but if you are brewing an APA or even an ESB there is more room for variation. Additionally, there is nothing wrong with brewing something generally in a particular style but intentionally going out of traditional parameters, such as adding NW hops to an ESB (which is being done by some brewers in England now).

If you were to do a collaborative beer, which brewery would you most like to work with and why?

Schlenkerla because I love rauchbier!

Which beer, other than your own, do you wish you had invented?

Tripel Karmeleit.

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