The Brew Like A Girl (BLAG) series has been going great! We’ve now released three beers in the series and already have a fourth in the plans to be released in April or May.
We brewed the third BLAG beer in collaboration with Witch Hunt, Mpls, an organization whose mission is to “foster professional pathways for under-represented individuals or groups in craft brewing through education.” Partnering with them seemed perfect since the BLAG series is intent on encouraging more women to be involved in the production side of craft brewing. We invited members of Witch Hunt to Hop & Barrel on brew day and had them observe and help with brewing. We also talked a bit about the importance of Quality Control in breweries and were able to try a couple of other examples of the style of beer we were brewing.
Speaking of, the beer style we chose is a white stout… which could be argued as not really a style and is kind of an oxymoron. Stouts are traditionally very dark, usually heavy-bodied and can taste roasty, sweet, chocolaty and/or coffee-like. A white stout should taste and drink like a traditional stout but be light in color because the dark malts have been omitted from the recipe. Our white stout was brewed with LOTS of oats, flaked barley, and wheat giving it a creamy and “thick” body. The challenge was emulating the flavors of a stout without those dark malts. We added some things like vanilla, hazelnut, and chocolate to help with this. Hopefully, people will enjoy the contradiction of a light-colored beer that feels and tastes like something completely different. I am very happy with the result and feel that it’s exactly what we had in mind!
We are calling this beer “Lady of the Woods” (thank you, Witch Hunt, for the amazing name, brilliant)! The name comes from the symbolic term for birch trees… seen as both a feminine and elegant part of the natural world. This symbolism and the tree’s distinctive white bark seem like perfect reasons to name a white stout brewed by women.