Monday, April 23, 2012

What's In a Name?

Like most homebrewers, I am sure, I like to give my beers names, and I like messing around with fonts to create labels - not really having much of an artistic talent for drawing. As well as naming my own beers, I have chosen the name for a couple of commercial beers.

When we brewed a Tmavé at Devils Backbone I came up with the name "Morana" as she is the Slavic goddess of winter and death, an effigy of whom is burnt each spring to mark the end of winter. More recently another local brewery, Blue Mountain, had a spot of bother with the labelling authorities here about a beer they wanted to call "Chocolate Orange Bourbon Porter" but were told the name is misleading. To solve their problem they turned to the power of social media, and asked their fans on Facebook to come up with the name, my entry won. The name I chose was "Isabel", named for the Princess Imperial of Brazil, which is the world's leading producer of oranges and cocoa and Isabel herself was descended from the royal House of Bourbon.

With my own beers, I like to give them names which are linked to either the style or the place where they originated, or some link to the ingredients. My Charlottenstädter Pils is named in part after the town I live in, but with the French "ville" replaced with the German "stadt" as it is a German style Pilsner, which I will be bottling tomorrow as it has been in the lagering tank for 35 days now. When I eventually make a Czech version I will have to come up with an alternative to Šarlotovický Ležák, because our new house is about 15 miles outside of town. Our new address is, officially at least, in Gordonsville, and one of the meanings of the name Gordon is "large fortification", so my Czech lager could be called "Pevnost" which means "fortress".

Talking about German beers, I am awaiting my score sheet for the only beer I entered in this year's National Homebrew Competition, an altbier called Cobbler's in honour of the first Altbier I ever had, from the Schumacher brewery. I am kind of nerovus about the score, as altbier is such a difficult beer style to find over here, other than Uerige that is, which I haven't seen around for a while.

Anyway, just a few random, and likely unconnected thoughts, having been inspired by Boak and Bailey's post today about naming their beers.

1 comment:

  1. Good luck with your Alt. Schumacher is good stuff. Late last year I bought a bottle of Uerige Sticke Alt at Capital Ale House of all places. I was definitely surprised to find it there. Sadly though the bottle was over a year old and was starting to show its age.


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