OUR FINAL RELEASE OF 2023!
Read more on our latest Field Recordings collaboration from Seb, our Director of Brewing
Our final release of 2023 is a collaboration with Noita, an urban winery who specialise in natural, raw wines in Finland. One that has been on our collaboration wishlist for a while and, with such unusual and unique ingredients, we knew this would challenge our brew team to create something special.
We sat down with Seb, our Director of Brewing, to find out more on this Field Recordings release…
Why did we want to collaborate with Noita?
Our Finnish distributor, Brukett, introduced us to Noita around two years ago, who then visited Springwell and did a natural wine tasting with us. We loved how forward thinking they were, not to mention their fantastic design, and thought it would be fun to do a collaboration with them.
How did we decide what style to brew?
The beer/wine hybrid has started to make an reappearance on the European beer scene, and it is something that really interested me to explore further. Our first-ever release from Field Recordings (A Hymn for the Fields) was a Saison brewed with Sauvignon Blanc yeast, so we thought about what the next step could be; how do we take this to the next level? This first release explored more of the complex compound aromas (thiols) created from using the wine yeast, whereas we wanted to experiment with using grape juice within the beer for this collaboration.
Within this brew we’ve used a combination of wine yeast and Kveik yeast, as we felt this would balance well and help it fully ferment out. Choosing a temperature that was at the bottom of the Kveik yeasts wants and the top of the wine yeast. We decided against a Saison yeast for this brew as it could potentially battle against the flavours of the grape juice and wine yeast.
What were the challenges you faced whilst brewing this recipe?
We used 10% grape must, the freshly pressed juice which also contains seeds, skins and stems but has no alcoholic content, which is a very different component for us to work with, and we wanted to keep that subtle aroma of the Muscat grapes, trying not to over hop it. We also used pasteurised grape juice from the organic Austrian producer that Noita utilises to create their own natural wines. We had to be careful with fermentation to make sure there were no off flavours, as it is a completely new thing for us to be fermenting grape juice along with wort, so we kept it fairly cool during this process, to keep it clean and hold on to those beautiful aromas, not overpowering them.
We also used a Pilsner malt as we wanted to create a light, clean and crisp base for the grapes – not too many malty, biscuity notes – to let the thiols and wine side of this recipe shine through.
What hops did we use and why?
We added Talus and Nelson Sauvin within the whirlpool, then finished with a dry hop of Nelson and Moteuka. Nelson Sauvin is the obvious choice for a winey flavour beer, pairing with the thiols created with the Sauvignon Blanc yeast. They have similar flavours. Whereas Talus was a nice addition, that brought a little fruitiness and not those piney, resinous notes that some hops have, which would overpower the Muscat grapes. Nothing too piney or aggressive, more citrus and fruity notes.
What is it about this collab that excites you?
I think a wine and beer hybrid is an interesting idea that I would like to explore more, using such a novel ingredient to us. Access to more grape varieties creates an interesting area of brewing that is developing at the moment. From a geekier, history side, some of the first alcoholic beverages discovered in archaeology show evidence of the combination of grapes and other fruits with barley. This beer has truly given us more chance to explore the relationship between grape and grain.
Our final release of 2023 will be available on our webshop from Tuesday 5th December and is one that we’re dead excited to share with you all. A deliciously crisp, clean, and bright IPA, laced with decadent thiols of tangy citrus, grapefruit, and a light floral finish.