Wow; and so it begins. Well, that’s not strictly true. Things started with this project a little while back. Shilling Brewing Co. has been around six months in the making, although I’ve only been on board for a couple of these.
When I was first approached to head the brew team, I was a little apprehensive as I’ve never been involved in a start-up before. The more I thought about it, though, it was pretty obvious that I really needed to get involved with this exciting venture! Soon after visiting the site and seeing plans for the brewery, I was hooked.
Then came ideas for what would become our core range of beers. Considering around 80-90% of beer consumed in Glasgow is pale, we decided that this was the way to go. At the moment IPAs and pale ales are probably my favourite style, so I was happy with this direction!
After a few trial brews we decided to launch with an IPA, a Blonde Ale and a Red. All breweries need a flagship IPA, and I hope that Unicorn will be ours. It’s got a really deep malt base with cara and a touch of chocolate malts. Centennial and Waimea hops are added in equal amounts to create a bright lemon citrus burst. Not too bitter or sweet, we believe it’s a great thirst-quencher.
Our Blonde ale, The Steamie, is a hop-forward little beer that borderlines on a session IPA. It’s characterised by a very pale straw colour and has wheat and oats to add body. A combo of NZ and USA hops create a tropical fruit salad complexity while the finish is a little like grapefruit.
The third beer took a little more consideration. It dawned on me to come up with a recipe for an 80/- as homage to our company name, but decided that not many people are fond of this traditional classic (no doubt there will be one on a rotational tap of ours soon, as we love them!). Instead, we took a similar malt bill and added a lot more late hops to enhance the caramel and toffee notes with a red berry and spice finish. The resulting Glasgow Red is a very drinkable and balanced beer.
All involved with Shilling are extremely eager to get our beers out there, and are looking forward to hearing your feedback. After all, the proof is in the pudding, as they say, and it’s you guys that will keep us on our toes! Although these three beers will launch as our core range, we will continuously strive to keep things exciting and fresh by developing weird and wonderful offerings, all the while learning how to extract the most out of our ingredients with our brand-new shiny kit. As a for-instance, our primary seasonal beer is a Saison that’s been flavoured with hunners of foraged nettles. But that’s another story...