This is the first glass poured from my latest home brew ( eagle-eyed beer geeks might recognise the bottle – it’s a reused bottle from the Renaissance brewery in New Zealand). The brew here is a toucan. That means you take two different cans of homebrew and put them together in your fermenter – “two-can” geddit?
I’d read about the toucan online and it sounded like enough of a novelty to give it a go. Though I think it’s usually used to get rid of two crap kits that you’ve somehow come across.
This one was a mix of a Coopers Pale Ale can and a Canadian Blonde, because part of the trick is apparently to balance the bitterness of the cans. I knew the former would have a whack of bitterness so I went for little bitterness in the latter. For a bit of flavour and aroma I dry-hopped Amarillo and Centennial hops.
I had reasonable hopes for this beer but it’s not too crash-hot (though it was only bottled six days ago, so it might get better with a bit of age). It looks nice but there’s a bit of a rubbery aroma, which is so not what I expected from the hops. A quick Internet search revealed the likely problem – it’s lightstruck.
This is the first beer I’ve made since I moved the Staircase Brewery out into the garage (because of the cold weather I opted to brew with lager yeast, which loves the cold. So I moved the brewery to the coldest place in the house – the garage). That means it’s out in the open and exposed to light all day long, and also at night should someone turn on the light in the garage.
The exposure to light apparently does something chemically to the hops, which I don’t understand, but which creates this rubbery aroma. There’s another beer in there now which will likely have the same effect, though I have since draped an old pajama top around it.
Taste is okay – there’s a smidge of bitterness that hangs around nicely but not much sign of any flavour from those hop additions.
Would I drink it again?: You betcha, it’s a case of what I call brewer’s sympathy. I made it so I’ll reckon it’ll taste a bit better than anyone else will. But I won’t be offering one to anyone else, unless they say, “you know, I’ve always loved the way rubber smells”. So that means two crates of beer just for me. Which isn’t that bad, really.