Ah, the quest to quench your thirst. For many, understanding what makes an ideal craft beer is ever sought. There are many factors, and sometimes even biases to beer. But, we’re here to tap into the world of brewing and help you understand what makes the best craft beer.
From newbies to connoisseurs, craft beer holds a certain mystique — if not an insider culture — not everyone feels privy to. To first understand how to approach conceptualising the best craft beer, we explain the importance of ingredients, as well as the differences between macro and craft beer. Once these basic concepts are tucked into your beer boffin belt, the concept of what makes a good craft is easy to understand. The next step to understanding the breakdown of beer: the families and flavours. Between the two main brew families, ales and lagers, there is a spectrum of subtle differences that develop signature styles and sensations. Both range from being pale in colour to rich, dark hues, due to the individual malts chosen and used.
With a range of spicy, fruity and floral flavours, ales are a popular choice among many. This variety of beer is produced by top-fermenting yeast, developed in warmer temperatures about 15 to 25 degrees Celsius
This end of the spectrum uses bottom-fermenting yeasts, in colder conditions — about 9 to 15 degrees Celsius — for longer. Lagers typically have a cleaner, crisper and rounder taste than ales.
The best way to summarise the key points of a beer? Sniff, stare, sip, swish, savour, and swallow. From colour to flavour, body and mouthfeel, there are so many elements to appreciate. When done correctly, drinking a cold craft is an experience. Explore how to judge your next brew like a professional in our quick guide to craft beer tasting.
Microbreweries are built around two main things: the process and the product. While the actual drink itself is the prize, it’s the culture and the creative process that becomes a story and, ultimately, an experience.
Craft brewers centre their final product through channelling the importance of the process, as well as adding new elements. Whether it’s experimenting with traditional techniques, trying new ingredients to create a new flavour palette, or brewing to pair with food, each batch is a journey. Brewers work to develop, discuss and merge ideas, using the brewing process as a way to fully explore the full potential of their craft.
Brewers want to ensure the culture of craft beer is understood and appreciated, as well as enjoyed. From development to drinking, the beer process carries the heart and soul of the beer in the taste, experience of the product and knowledge of the process. Just visit a brewery or explore a craft market, you are sure to find a beer aficionado ready to bond over brew. As craft brewers focus on establishing a better product through shared knowledge and experience, the next important step to deciding the best craft beer: authentic ingredients to the region.
Craft brewers define their unique flavour by encapsulating their brews with local flavours. Everything from the deciding which hops to use (avoiding cheap substitutions like rice or corn) to sourcing the local water (the pH balance and minerals are important here). Craft beer is based on being authentic with the ingredients, stories and experience for both the producer and consumer. We only source the best ingredients for our beers and are always on the lookout for fantastic local ingredients.
The answer to this question? It all comes down to personal preference. Come and visit us to decide which elements make the best craft beer for you. Contact us to book a brewery tour and beer tasting, available Friday to Sunday by appointment. We’ll happily share our knowledge over a crafty pint.