Inspired by the amazing talks and data shown at Brewing Summit 2018, Cellix has a round-up of the most talked-about topics in the beer and brewing world for the coming year; here are 5 things we learned from Brewing Summit 2018.
We attended with a prototype of our Inish Mini-Bar – a portable device to test bacterial or yeast contamination of draft beer that gives results at the bar-side, in minutes. A simple ‘traffic light’ system tells you whether the beer is clean (green) or has either a low (amber) or high (red) level of microbial growth.
It's perfect for ensuring consistent quality of your brand – ideal for anyone involved in quality control, line cleaning, or brewery testing.
Here are 5 things we learned at #BrewingSummit2018:
1. Trending up: Sour Beers
One thing we noticed this year was the prevalence in talk about sour beer production. Sour beers, such as the Lambic, Gueuze and Flanders styles traditionally popular in Belgium, have an intentionally tart or sour taste and are intentionally brewed with wild yeasts or bacteria that in the contexts of other beers would be considered spoilage organisms.
With the increased interest in these beers, problems arise relating to controlling unwanted organism growth while allowing the variety of strains that give sour beer it's characteristic taste. As more brewers get into sour beers, we look forward to seeing where this takes quality control and microbial detection.
2. Trending up: Barrel aged beers
Barrel aged (BA) beers are a relatively new phenomenon, when compared with the practice of aging spirits in barrels, emerging as a practice in the early 1990s. There's a reason it didn't take off straight away; it's a challenging practice on many levels. It takes time (up to 3 years) for the beer to age, which requires space and good microbial control.
However, with the increase in the market for premium 'luxury' beers, these higher price craft brews could begin to be a part of the normal product line of many more breweries.
There was certainly interest about BA beers at Brewing Summit 2018; we attended an amazing talk by Avi Shayevitz, entitled 'Do oak barrels contribute to variability of the microbiome in barrel-aged beers?', where he highlighted that in an 18 barrel batch, 1-3 will spoil; this is a premium product and that represents significant losses in time and effort.