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CATAWBA BEER 101 – BELGIAN TRIPEL

The Belgian Tripel is a strong ale, bright yellow to golden in color, with a distinctively complex aroma and flavor. Its geographical origin is known, however, the history behind the style name is a subject of debate.  The Tripel originated in Belgium approximately 80 years ago. It is part of a family of Belgian ales defined, in part, by incrementally greater alcohol content – a series that includes the lesser-known Single, and the “Holy Trinity of Abbey Ales”: Dubbel, Tripel…

BREWING WITH RYE & ALTERNATIVE GRAINS

FOR THIS WEEK, WE’RE ALLOWING BARLEY TO TAKE A BACKSEAT TO “ALTERNATIVE” BREWING GRAINS, ALSO KNOWN AS ADJUNCTS. Adjuncts are unmalted grains or grain products added to the mash to supplement the main mash ingredient, barley. Rye, a close relative to barley, is often used in baking, whiskey, vodka, animal feed, and even beer. In fact, rye served as the primary brewing grain in Germany until the 15th century. Consequently, after a run of bad harvests, it was decided this…

Brewing With Honey

For tens of thousands of years, honey was known as the “universal sweetener,” being the primary source of sugar in many parts of the world. Some of the earliest alcoholic beverages were made with diluted fermented honey – beer and mead included. Belgian brewers, in particular, have become known for their ales brewed with sugars and spices. The Biere de Miel (French for “honey beer”) may be familiar only to connoisseurs of Belgian beers, but anyone who’s tasted the version produced by…