It was back in 2011 when I cracked open a beer that was to change my preconceived ideas of what beer is taste like.
For as long as I can remember I’d walk into a pub and order a lager which, to me, was just fizzy tasting nothingness. Bitters we’re not really for me either as they just seem flat, brown and lifeless with no flavou. This was what I thought drinking beer was all about a rite of passage so come on get on with it suck it up!
Then back to 2011 and I cracked open this little blue can from, a now very well-known, Brewery based in the northern part of the UK.
I had heard about them before and one of the guys in the office had actually bought shares in them but I’ve never paid much attention to it, because to me beer was just this, not very exciting, mucky drink really. Then, cracking that can I felt such a sense of relief that I could actually enjoy a beer for not the alcohol, but the taste. All those wonderful citrus flavours just flooding through, it was incredible. These guys had opened a gateway into the incredible world of craft beer. And it’s here that I realise how important our local bottle shops are because my path of discovery only continued. Trips to the bottle shop were hugely exciting, checking out these different kinds of beers with incredible names and even more incredible labels. It just seemed so cool, almost obvious and crafty.
Then the brew journey began, well actually it was myself and a good buddy of mine who booked onto a brew day in London where, under the guidance of our Brew master, we were introduced to the different ingredients such as malts and hops. We threw these into some sort of process which no one really understood, partly because we were busy quaffing beers at the time!. Still, we had brewed our first beer. We never actually got to taste it because we never got to pick it up but it was probably pretty awful. That was enough to spike the interest though because the Brew kit came next and from there the deeper I went down the rabbit hole. Game changes came with CO2 and temperature control and then following that the control of oxidation. Within a year I was brewing in NEIPA which looked great but still wasn’t quite right. I had to get into the water chemistry and boy was that another big step forward.
Fast forward to 2020 and the decision was made to jump in with the pro Brew kit and open Trailhead. Armed with scores of recipes, some cool names, a logo and a whole bucket load of enthusiasm, we had what we needed. Our journey is very public now so jump in, taste of beers, give us feedback both positive and negative, it’s all good, just come with us.