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The Friday Question

It’s almost a Christmas miracle …. I’m actually managing to post the Friday Question in consecutive weeks!

So, tonight is the soft opening over at The Ale House, Columbia. You know the score, putting the staff through their paces, ironing out some wrinkles etc. Unfortunately I’m on daddy duty tonight so am not able to attend but I visited last night to help out with the staff training and I have to say, the place looks fantastic! I can’t wait until the official Grand Opening Celebration on Friday 14th (note the Ale House is actually open to the public on Tuesday 11th but the official opening/ribbon cutting will be Friday at 5pm). One of you, dear readers, will of course be visiting with a $50 tab on us, but more of that later!

Saturday is shaping up to be a busy day. I’m kicking off with the Holiday Beer Festival at the Pratt Street Ale House held in conjunction with our friends at The Brewer’s Art. There’s an embarrassment of riches to be had in terms of both beer and food, including plenty of cask conditioned ales. Definitely not an event to be missed. I’m also very excited to represent Oliver’s at a growler fill/tasting event/meet and greet at my neighborhood store, Pinehurst Wine Shoppe tomorrow (Saturday) at 2pm. I’ll be there with the first cask of “Merry Ole Ale” to be released (that’s our traditional English Christmas Ale, gently spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg & allspice) as well as drafts of Ironman Pale Ale, 3 Lions Ale, Winter’s Wolves, Williams Winter Warmer and Bell Croft. I’ll also have some glassware to give away so come early as supplies are limited.

We’ve been working with our good friend Jeremy Mooy to design new logos for our existing year round brews as well as forthcoming seasonals & one off brews. Shown below are a couple of examples, our Bishop’s Breakfast oatmeal stout and Dark Horse ale. Pretty cool, we think!

This week I’ve brewed the latest in the “Ape” series of session beers, “Beware The Beast Man … ” which should be available in within a couple of weeks. It was brewed with halcyon pale ale malt, crystal rye, carabrown and malted oats, bittered with Tettnanger & Hersbrucker and finished with Simcoe & Columbus and will come in at a little over 3.8% abv. Next week I’ll be brewing “Godgifu” (pronounced Godiva), a chestnut brown ale, brewed with freshly roasted chestnuts.

On to the business at hand. Last week I asked what the gyle (batch) number of that day’s brew was. As it happens I posted a small clue on the brewery Facebook page earlier that day in the form of a picture of one of the barrels aging in our cellar. Clearly visible on the face of the barrel was both the gyle of that batch and the date so it was possible to make an educated guess at the current gyle number. As it happens, my good friend Scott Scharf spotted this and dusted off his abacus to work it out and his guess of 3828 was closest to the actual number, 3803. Congratulations Scott, you win a $50 tab at the Grand Opening Party on Friday.

This week you can win a growler fill at the Pratt Street Ale House and all I want to know is… how many different hop varieties do we have in house at the moment? Simple, eh? You know the score, post your guess in the comment section below and the closest answer will win. Have a great weekend. Cheers!