March 23, 2016

Collaboration Beer brewed in Munich

Late last month, Maor Helfman and Itai Gutman of Herzl Beer in Jerusalem, flew to Munich to brew a collaborative beer with their German counterparts at the Crew Republic Brewery.  (To get more background information, please read my previous post here.) 
Itai Gutman (left), Maor Helfman and Timm Schnigula
get together to brew their collaborative beer.

© Jewish Museum Munich (photo: Vivi d'Angelo)

The as-yet-unnamed beer will be unveiled to the public on April 13 at the opening of an exhibit at the Munich Jewish Museum, called "Beer is the Wine of this Land: Jewish Brewing Tales."  

The exhibit marks the 500th anniversary of the Reinheitsgebot, the famous Bavarian beer purity decree.

"Some 2,500 liters of our beer is now fermenting and conditioning at the Craft Republic Brewery," Maor Helfman told me after he returned to Israel.  

"When we planned our joint Israeli-German beer, we knew we had to obey the Reinheitsgebot, which demands that beer only contain grain, water, hops and yeast.  So we couldn't add an 'Israeli ingredient' like oranges, date honey, pomegranates, etc.
Side one of the new beer
coaster shows the
logos of the Crew
Republic and Herzl . . .

© Jewish Museum Munich

"We decided to make a 'steam beer,' which would take a typical German lager, normally fermented at 8-12 degrees centigrade (46-540 F) and ferment it at a higher temperature associated with Israel -- in this case, 14-18 degrees centigrade (57-640 F)."   

This is called a "steam beer" or a "California common beer" since the style was made popular in California beginning in the mid-1800s.  Modern refrigeration was not available, and in order to cool the wort quickly before fermentation, it was poured into large, shallow trays to catch the breezes coming from the Pacific Ocean.  The "steam" refers to the mist which hovered over the open trays of beer while it was fermenting.
 . . . and side two has the
name of the exhibit:
"Beer is the Wine of
this Land."

© Jewish Museum Munich

Steam beers are normally characterized by assertive hoppiness together with a strong malty character and fruit tastes.  Since it combines lager yeast with ale fermentation temperatures, steam beer is generally clear and crisp like a lager, but also full-bodied like an ale.  I should add that the expectations for this beer are high.

The collaborative beer was brewed with German Pilsner malts, Hallertau and East Kent Golding hops, and fresh yeast from the famous Weihenstephan Brewery in Germany.

Maor and Itai worked on the beer with the two partners of the Crew Republic Brewery, Timm Schnigula and Mario Hanl.  
The new labels of the
collaborative beer.

© Jewish Museum Munich
(photo: Vivi d'Angelo)

"They just moved into a new brewery which is amazing," Maor said.  "All the equipment is the most modern and completely automated.  It was wonderful to work with such dedicated brewers and I can say we learned a lot."

The new labels for the collaborative beer have already been printed up, and here is the translation from the German:

Collaboration Brew: Inspired by the Jewish Museum in Munich and on the occasion of the exhibition "Beer is the Wine of this Land," we have brewed this special beer together with the Herzl Brewery from Jerusalem.  This amber colored steam beer is fermented with a traditional bottom fermenting yeast from Bavaria at warm temperatures that are typical for Israel.  And of course we did not forget to add a nice hoppy note.  Brewed and bottled by us for you at the Crew Republic Brewery, Andreas Danzer Weg 30, UnterschleiƟheim.

Maor won't reveal anything more about the beer, so I guess I'll just have to wait unti the Grand Exhibit Opening and the Grand Collaborative Beer Launch on April 12, when I plan to be there in Munich.
Conrad Seidl, the "Beer Pope," takes his
first taste of the wort.  What is he thinking?

© Jewish Museum Munich (photo: Vivi d'Angelo)

Maor and Itai will be joining my wife Trudy and me there, as will those two fervent champions of Israel craft beer, Bernhard Purin, the museum director, and Conrad Seidl, the "Beer Pope" from Vienna.

Stay tuned.         

1 comment:

Thanks for your comment. L'chayim!