Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Sweet As... Rye Pale Ale

I learnt several months ago of the Crazy Mountain Homebrew Pro-Am. With a deep repertoire of homebrew beers, I made sure to put some aside to enter and I even deliberately brewed a couple more to enter.  Having made 11 batches of beer out in Colorado, I submitted 6 of those that I thought were worth  entering. Some supportive friends who are big fans of my brewing immediately suggesting that I would certainly win, so I did feel a little confident. I know my beers taste good, and others seem to think so too, so I did hope to place at least. Eventually I learned that out of the top five beers at the end of the judging, three were mine! So it was my Rye Pale Ale that took it out. A sweet malty amber in colour ale, well hopped, with a decent bitterness and spicy floral aroma, which I matched with the addition of rye.

Crazy Mountain Brewery in full swing
It was still surprising when I received a phone call one morning from Crazy Mountain and the lady announced I was the winner. I'm not going to write what my response was but it was along the like of "very fantastic". So I headed immediately to the brewery to hand over the recipe and headed back a few days later to brew the beer with the head brewer as an upscaled 2,500 liter batch. Like I did while interning in NZ, I just talked the poor brewers head off, asking question, telling stories and trying to pick up as much as I could.

My girlfriend, friends, colleagues and even my bosses
As announced by an article and ad in the newspaper, a special beer release party was to be held a few weeks later, when the beer was ready to drink. I was to drink as much of my beer as I pleased, for free even! Due to my recent snowboarding injury I employed my friends to fetch refills of my jug which was well shared among the group. I enjoyed the fame on the night of appraise and still get the odd random acknowledgement. It was a fantastic night with a great showing of friends, work colleagues, and many valley locals. The beer has been very well recieved and I am happy with how the upscaled version turned out. It will remain on tab at the Crazy Mountian Brewery and hopefully distributed to  few pubs around the valley.


  1. I just swell with pride to be your big sister when I read this story Thomas. Well done.