The pursuit of Hoppiness: Great state ale works 🍻

Lacing: A term I picked up on a Saturday evening at The Little Easy, Mumbai. It’s one thing to pick up these terms while chatting with a couple of friends but it’s something else coming directly from the mouth of the man behind the beer you’re drinking!

I first came across Great State at the 2018 Tapped brewing festival in Pune(where the brewery is located).

Having visited his stall to purchase a brew more number of times than I’d like to admit. 😅

But more on the types of brews I’ve tasted later on.

The evening started with an intimate gathering of beer enthusiasts, an ale in hand & a great discussion around it. Nakul B from the Great state ale works had us covered!

From the science behind brewing to the reason behind taking his home brewing hobby off the sidelines and finally to the inception of the brand “Great state”. Listening to food or drinks enthusiasts talk about the reasoning behind diving into the risky world of making it on their own is something I can listen to for hours.

Nakul was no exception. An extremely approachable person with a genuine interest for learning and sharing knowledge, the session went into the ingredients behind a frosty brew. From orange zest to coriander seeds. Malt is to colour as hops is to aroma. And let’s not forget the yeast. “Brewers make wort while yeast makes beer”- he quipped.

Personally, a hot kitchen is something I recognise. From the ingredients & skills to the final product. But the science behind a brewing process opened my eyes to a whole new art form that I now appreciate. Until he stated “ Brewing is often simpler than cooking a chicken curry.” 😅CHALLENGE ACCEPTED, Nakul !!

From the brewers time in Boston, learning, experimenting and collaborating with his friend Tony, all the way to the theories on how the Indian Pale Ale(IPA) came into being.

Here are a few key points I picked up over the session:

• Beer is not meant to be sipped on while tasting. You go in with a gulp!

• A good head retention and lacing is a sign of a good brew.

• Dry hoping is the process of adding the hops after the fermentation process is complete.

• A brew served in a clean glass is well received.

Speaking of the devil, we were given three brews to taste and assess:

1. The Belgium Whit

2. The Golden ale

3. The New England IPA

#2 was the fave for its spicy aroma, medium head retention, opaqueness and its low carbonation. I know how to describe this now! Thanks to @nakulb (I could be wrong is my assessment but atleast I understand the aspects of what to look for in a brew).

Great state can be described as something of a mad scientist- filled with passion and curiosity within the experiments. With that in mind, here is a look at some of their collaboration brews that are close to my ❤️:

1. The Belgium golden ale with coffee. A collab with @kcroasters.

2. The salted Kokum ale (my mangalorean senses were tingling)

3. And it’s on to the pursuit of hoppiness to check out the new pineapple ale currently being served at @opedro , for their 1st birthday.

Its a pleasure to see India take to the brewing stage and I would like to thank Nakul and Great state ale works for the lesson! Cheers! 🍻

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