The Journal

  1. An Interview with Salt Beer Factory

    An Interview with Salt Beer Factory

    This week we launch the range of Salt Beer Factory beers on the site and what better way to introduce a new brewery to our beer hunters than to have a good 'ole fashioned interview with Nadir Zairi, Director of the Yorkshire based brewery in Saltaire.
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  2. 10 Essential Things you need to Know about Oktoberfest

    10 Essential Things you need to Know about Oktoberfest

    It's that special time of year when the men don their Lederhosen and the ladies their Dirndl, Oktoberfest is upon us! If it's your first year attending the German beer festival you'll probably be wondering what it's all about. We've listed our top 10 essential things you need to know about Oktoberfest, whether you're booking a flight to Germany or planning your own Oktoberfest party at home, this will help you get into the Oktoberfest spirit!
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  3. Is the Future of Beer Non-Alcoholic?

    Is the Future of Beer Non-Alcoholic?

    There are signs that Non-Alcoholic beer is hitting the mainstream and is poised to hit the big time, but just how popular will it become? In this article I’ll look at some of the signs that show ‘NOLO’ (non or low alcoholic) beer is becoming a serious player in our industry, and how its development might progress in the UK.
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  4. How to host a successful beer tasting night on a budget

    How to host a successful beer tasting night on a budget

    After trying out our very own World Beers mixed case for a beer tasting party, Christie Day, Brand Expert at money-saving website Savoo shares her tips for hosting a top beer tasting night on a budget.

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  5. Gordon Brown - UK Craft Beer Revolution Hero?

    Gordon Brown - UK Craft Beer Revolution Hero?

    Ask someone down the pub for the reasons behind Britain’s recent Beer revival, and you’re guaranteed all sorts of different explanations. In 2017 the number of UK breweries passed the 2000 mark, which puts us well ahead of European neighbours. Most will have a reasonable argument for why, but you can bet your double-dry hopped DIPA that very few of them would mention Gordon Brown, ex-PM and former Chancellor of the Exchequer.

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  6. Introducing Tynt Meadow

    Introducing Tynt Meadow

    The UK's first Trappist brewery has launched with the delicious Tynt Meadow. Read the amazing story behind it here.

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  7. We’re joining forces with BeerBods

    We’re joining forces with BeerBods

    We’ll be working with BeerBods to help build the UK’s leading retailer of craft beer.
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  8. 10 of the best Fruit Beers

    10 of the best Fruit Beers

    Our top ranked and reviewed fruit beers by our customers plus a few of our favourites, including a collab between To Øl and Pohjala. Tantalise your tastebuds this Summer with these punchy fruit beers.

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  9. Everything you need to know about PerfectDraft

    Everything you need to know about PerfectDraft

    If you find yourself reading this, it’s probably for one of two reasons. Either you’ve made the sound decision and invested in a Phillips PerfectDraft Machine and want to learn more about it; or it could be that you’re still on the fence and are asking yourself “Should I buy a PerfectDraft?”. Hopefully this nifty little guide will put your mind at ease and quell any doubts or concerns you have.
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  10. Why is Belgian beer so good?

    Why is Belgian beer so good?

    If you’re not already into craft beer then hopefully you’re thinking about it but may not know where to start, so if that’s the case then I’ve got a suggestion: start with Belgian beer as that’s exactly where my adventure began.
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  11. Top 10 Father's Day Beer Gifts

    Top 10 Father's Day Beer Gifts

    Father’s Day, 16th June 2019, is the special date in the calendar when we celebrate and give a nod to the Dads in our lives. It’s an excuse to spoil them with a little something to say thank you for being awesome. If you’re looking for inspiration for a craft beer -loving Dad, then check out our top 10 Father’s Day craft beer gifts.
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  12. 8 Most Romantic Craft Beers for Valentines

    8 Most Romantic Craft Beers for Valentines

    In case you missed the explosion of teddy bears and chocolate roses love is apparently in the air. And while you’ve been trying to decide on the perfect Valentine gift for other half this year, we've been busy scouring the shelves for the most tenuous Valentine’s Day-related beers we could find. Enjoy.
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  13. Homebrew essentials #3: Mashing in

    Homebrew essentials #3: Mashing in

    Mashing in is the process that extracts all the fermentable sugars from the malt. It's one of the most important steps for all-grain brewing and here's how to do it.  

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  14. Camden's 2018 barrel-aged lager released

    Camden's 2018 barrel-aged lager released

    Camden Town Brewery’s Beer 2018 is inspired by a classic German Pilsner and the Old Fashioned cocktail. And it's stunning.
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  15. What is RateBeer and why should you care?

    What is RateBeer and why should you care?

    What is RateBeer and why should you care? 

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  16. How to make amazing IPA in 8 easy steps

    How to make amazing IPA in 8 easy steps

    Homebrewing is much easier than you think. Here's how to make an amazing IPA in 8 simple steps.

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  17. Spooktacular beers

    Spooktacular beers

    Want an article full of terrible puns? No? How about 10% off these fangtatsic beers?

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  18. What we are drinking #2: Anthony

    What we are drinking #2: Anthony

    It's the second in a new series featuring the favourite beers of Beer Hawk staff. Up now is Anthony who is loving the German classic, Flensburger Gold

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  19. A Touch of Prost is here!

    A Touch of Prost is here!

    A Touch of Prost is our exclusive Oktoberfest collaboration with Tempest Brew Co, one of the country's best new breweries. Pick it up now!

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  20. Beer Hawk's Advent Calendar is back... and WOW!

    Beer Hawk's Advent Calendar is back... and WOW!

    Beer Hawk's Craft Beer Advent Calendar is better than ever. 24 incredible beers including 9 exclusive to Beer Hawk. Plus a free tasting kit (worth £20) plus incredible prizes (think all-expenses-paid trips to the USA) and loads more 

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  21. What we are drinking #1: Ellie

    What we are drinking #1: Ellie

    Welcome to the first in a new series featuring the current favourite beers of Beer Hawk staff. First up is Ellie who chooses Magic Rock's High Wire Grapefruit


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  22. 8 things you need to know about low and no alcohol beers

    8 things you need to know about low and no alcohol beers

    8 things you need to know about low alcohol and no alcohol beers 

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  23. Homebrew: electric kettle or burner?

    Homebrew: electric kettle or burner?

    Both the propane burner and electric kettle have their advantages, but for reliability and speed, the burner is our preference

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  24. INTERVIEW: Dave Stone of Wylam Brewery

    INTERVIEW: Dave Stone of Wylam Brewery

    As well as probably having the country's most beautiful brewery, Wylam is also making some of the country's most interesting beers. We caught up with director Dave Stone
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  25. INTERVIEW: Siren Craft Beer

    INTERVIEW: Siren Craft Beer

    Siren Craft Brew is one of the country's most innovative breweries. We chat to founder Darron Anley and Head Brewer Kyle Larsen to find out why

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  26. BHU: Let's Do This!

    BHU: Let's Do This!

    This week at Beer Hawk University we're going to get prepped to homebrew last week's recipe for the Mosaic golden ale. The time has come!

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  27. Classic food pairing: Steak Tartare

    Classic food pairing: Steak Tartare

    Known as a Filet Américain in Belgium, the steak tartare is one of the great dishes. But what to pair with it? Our Beer Sommelier Maggie Cubbler picks out a classic

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  28. How Alphabet became Manchester's most hyped brewery

    How Alphabet became Manchester's most hyped brewery

    In an industry where breweries can be hyped as much as new bands, Co-Founder of Manchester's Alphabet Brewing Company, Joe Fernhead explains how the brewery became so good, and whether we should believe the hype

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  29. Homebrew essentials #2: Heating water

    Homebrew essentials #2: Heating water

    The brewday continues in part two of, frankly many parts. It is, is all about heating water. 'Easy' you say? Well, in true homebrew style, we've managed to overcomplicate it, and put in a formula.
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  30. Inside BrewDog

    Inside BrewDog

    John Allen is a man with a big responsibility as the BrewDog’s Brewing Manager. In this interview, he talks about BrewDog’s ethos, how it became so successful and some of the beer he’s loving right now.  
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  31. Homebrew essentials #1: Preparation

    Homebrew essentials #1: Preparation

    In the first of our (virtual) cut-out-and-keep homebrewing course, we're looking at preparation – it'll make your brewday go much more smoothly

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  32. Homebrew recipe: Dry Irish Stout

    Homebrew recipe: Dry Irish Stout

    Bold, dry, rich and delicious, here's our easy homebrew recipe for a classic: the Dry Irish Stout. A noticeable roasted character with a rather high hop bitterness.

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  33. INTERVIEW: Northern Monk Brewing Co

    INTERVIEW: Northern Monk Brewing Co

    Northern Monk Brewing Co amazing rise continues in a new brewery. We catch up with Head Brewer Brian Dickson who charts its rise and learn about his favourite beers

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  34. PerfectDraft Con 2018 tickets are NOW LIVE!

    PerfectDraft Con 2018 tickets are NOW LIVE!

    On the day we'll have a food van selling tasty treats, as well as bottled beers and soft drinks at our paid beer bar.
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  35. Crossing borders

    Crossing borders

    English vs US IPAs, Bohemian Pilsner vs German Pils, Belgian Witbier vs German Weissbier. How exactly do the same beer styles differ in different countries?

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  36. Hops: Pellets vs whole cone

    Hops: Pellets vs whole cone

    We only answer the important questions here at Beer Hawk and this week it is: should you be using pelletised (real word!) hops or whole cone

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  37. Goose Island brew course and tasting, including Bourbon County Stout

    Goose Island brew course and tasting

    Join Goose Island brewer Austin Niestrom to taste and make beers at UBrew in London

    Goose Island Beer Company, the brewery who brought Bourbon County Stout into the world back in 1992, want to teach you how they brew dark beer. Goose Island Brewer Austin Niestrom is flying in from Chicago to hold an exclusive brew course at Ubrew, where you'll brew a recipe that was inspired by one of the brewery's exclusive Fulton & Wood series. It’s a sweet porter recipe inspired by a beer called Real Nice Surprise which was released in 2015. Once your beer's fermented and bottled, you'll be able to swing by and collect roughly 15 bottles to take home.

    In the downtime between boiling, mashing and pitching Austin will be taking you through an in-depth tasting of both rare

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  38. BHU: Perfecting the Recipe

    BHU: Perfecting the Recipe

    This week at Beer Hawk University, we're going to take a closer look at the BeerSmith software. This software is vital in creating a fantastic homebrew recipe.

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  39. BHU: Brew Day!

    BHU: Brew Day!

    Now that we know what basic ingredients and kit we need to make a beer, it's now onto the fun stuff! Since most of the brewers we've "met" along this trip probably started as homebrewers, it makes sense that we plan our first homebrewing recipe. It's almost brew day!

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  40. [INTERVIEW] What makes Sori Brewing so great?

    What makes Sori Brewing so great?

    Estonia's Sori Brewing crowdfunded in 2014 and 2015 and has since become very well respected in particular for its hoppy IPAs and dark beers. We spoke to CEO and co-founder Pyry Hurula to find out what exactly they are doing right

    Your beer is amazing. What are you doing right?
    Our team has done its homework. Our lead brewer (Heikki Uotila) is super talented and has a good understanding of all properties of the

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  41. Do you need a hot liquor tank?

    Do you need a hot liquor tank?

    Why a hot liquor tank will make your brewday go quicker

    There are several methods for heating water depending on your set up. Our chosen method is to use a hot liquor tank (HLT). This is an essential part of a large scale brewery, but it is optional when homebrewing. This separate insulated vessel is useful for several reasons.

    The HLT is used in the first instance just before mashing. Once the water for the mash is heated to the right temperature, it is then decanted into the HLT. The water from the HLT is then used during the mash. By moving the water from the kettle to the HLT, you can then immediately fill up the kettle and heat it up for the sparge water. Without an HLT you'll find yourself waiting for the sparge water once you've freed it up. We've also found the HLT much easier to physically move around if you need that a scolding hot kettle. It keeps the heat brilliantly.

    One of most useful

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  42. Is this the ultimate beer shed?

    Is this the ultimate beer shed?

    When we put a shout-out for the best beer sheds on the Perfect Draft Facebook group, we didn't expect this

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  43. The History of Beer - Part 3 - by Pete Brown

    The History of Beer – Part 2 – Commercial Brewing

    The third part in an exclusive series of articles about the history of beer by one of the world's best beer writers

    For most of our history, beer has been drunk on the same premises it was made: in homes, monasteries, inns, taverns and alehouses.

    But naturally, some people are better at making beer than others, and from the Middle Ages onwards

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  44. INTERVIEW: Sierra Nevada's Steve Grossman

    Peak brewing

    We speak to Sierra Nevada's beer ambassador Steve Grossman about Sierra Nevada's amazing past and what the future holds for the brewery

    It’s hard to overstate the influence Sierra Nevada has made on the world of beer. This brewery, based in Chico, California, was launched in 1979 in the first wave of US craft breweries that would change the world. It was founded by avid homebrewers Ken Grossman and Paul Camusi. They also turned to local ingredients, including hops from the Yakima Valley. The first beers they made are still benchmarks in craft brewing’s most famous beer styles. Steve Grossman, Sierra Nevada’s Beer Ambassador, curates a case of beers that highlight the brewery’s best as well as picking out the beers that are much-loved by Sierra Nevada. We caught up with him on a recent visit to the UK.

    People namecheck Sierra

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  45. BHU: The Brewery Tour

    Week 27: Basic Brewing Equipment

    No matter whether you're the head brewer in one of the world's biggest breweries or the head brewer in your kitchen, the basic brewing process remains the same. Welcome back to BHU as we take you on a brewery tour to discuss the basic brewing equipment needed to brew beer!

    Sanitation

    The very first thing when it comes to brewing is making sure that everything--and we mean everything--is super clean. Nothing will ruin your day, and your brew, quicker than some bacteria or other undesirables getting into your beer. So, we're not even going to start this tour until we talk about sanitation.

    The best way to clean everything--right down to your hands--is to use a food-grade cleanser like Star San to get every nook and cranny spotless. There are other powder or bleach-based cleaners available

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  46. Interview: Scotland's Williams Bros

    Flowers of Scotland

    Williams Bros are one of the most exciting breweries in Britain. Here we speak to co-founder Scott Williams about how the beer scene has changed since 1988 and using traditional ingredients

    Williams Bros started in 1988 - was there a feeling that the beer scene in the UK was changing even then?
    To be honest the opportunity in the beer scene never really occurred to us in a general sense. Prior to brewing heather ale our involvement in brewing was essentially at the homebrew level – through a couple of shops of our own in Glasgow and Aberdeen as well as supplying other homebrew retailers from our wholesale business covering the UK and Ireland. We had contact with a few small brewers at this time by supplying them with malted barley, hops and often yeast but none were doing particularly well and ultimately gave up the ghost.

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  47. Beer jargon buster

    Beer jargon buster

    There’s a lot of jargon, buzzwords and terminology floating around the beery world. Beer Hawk is here to help make sense of it all

    BEER
    Admittedly, not jargon, but we know it is the oldest and most widely consumed alcoholic drink in the world. Brewed using cereal grains and fermented.

    MALT
    Think of malt as the base of beer. It provides the sugar for alcohol, but also impacts on the colour and flavour.

    HOPS
    Hops are responsible for preservative qualities, imparting bitterness and giving flavour and aroma.

    YEAST
    A group of organisms that ferment sugars to alcohol and carbon dioxide. It also can add flavours to a beer.

    BOTTLE-CONDITIONED
    Naturally carbonated in the the bottle because of an additional fermentation from sugar added in packaging.

    ABV
    This is the measurement of alcohol in a solution described as ‘alcohol by volume’, in percentage terms.

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  48. Homebrew: How to make sour beers

    How to make sour beers

    The popularity of sour beers shows no sign of abating, and it is well within the scope of a homebrewer

    Sour beers have been part of the fabric of Belgian beer culture for centuries. Only recently gaining popularity in the States and then the international beer market. So-called ‘sour’ or ‘wild’ beers include some styles that are one way or another sour, tart, funky, barnyard-like or acidic thanks to the introduction of wild yeasts and bacteria during fermentation.

    LACTOBACILLUS
    Called ‘lacto’ in beery circles, lactobacillus is a bacteria which eats the sugars in wort and, instead of converting them to alcohol, converts them to lactic acid. The result is a clean yet sour taste and is what gives Goses and Berliner Weisses their distinctive flavours.

    PEDIOCOCCUS
    AKA ‘pedio’, this is another bacteria which converts sugars to lactic acid. The result is

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  49. Tryanuary: Delve into the dark side

    Delve into the dark side

    If it is a dark, winter ale that you’re pining for...

    Ohh those dark beers: Deep, bold, luxurious and opulent. We can see why you like them! Naturally ‘dark’ doesn’t explain how something tastes, but if you’re reaching for something dark, it’s probably because you love something a bit fuller-bodied, rich in flavour and possibly not too bitter. It’s a wildly diverse category of course, from 3.5% milds to 11% imperial stouts. It includes Bocks from Germany and tripels from Belgium, milk stouts from American and, of course, the porter from Britain and much else besides. We’ve picked out a few of our favourite dark beers of the moment to showcase the variety on offer. There’s even a marshmallow beer!

    Big Drop / Stout / 0.05%

    Big Drop Brewing Co is a brewery that is dedicated to producing exceptional beers that are less than 0.5% ABV beer. There’s

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  50. The History of Beer - Part 2 - by Pete Brown

    The History of Beer – Part 2 – From ale to beer

    The second part in an exclusive series of articles by one of the world's best beer writers

    Wherever humans settle, they have always managed to ferment the local vegetation into booze. Depending where on Earth they are, some plants grow better than others. And while the climate has changed quite a bit over the centuries, grapes have always grown well in southern Europe, while grain has fared better in the north.

    So when the wine-loving Romans arrived in northern Europe, they were distinctly sniffy about the local beverage. The Emperor Julian is reputed to have written an ode to ‘wine made from barley’:

    Who made you and from what?
    By the true Bacchus I know you not.
    He smells of nectar
    But you smell of goat.

    Given the early recorded origins of beer in the Middle East, many have speculated how it made its way from there to northern Europe,

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