THREE HILLS PALE ALE SERIES: HEIDRUN
 

BEHIND THE BEER

Heidrun was a Norse goat with a special ability.

Some might say she possessed the best ability a goat could possibly have had in all of goat history, for from the teat of Heidrun flowed not milk, but beer.

And not just any beer.

The beer brewed inside Heidruns magical goat mammaries was destined for the valiant Norse warriors residing in Valhalla. And as this was the heavenly afterlife, the elixir of Heidruns was limitless and free flowing for the mighty warriors.

In true Scandanavian style, the Vikings hailed the beer of Heidruns sacred teat as "probably the best beer in the world. Ever. Most likely even better than that famous Danish brand." 

And there we have it: The Three Hills sessionable pale ale series will be named after probably the best goat in all history: HEIDRUN. 

THE BEER

Each batch of the Heidrun series will showcase a unique combination of new world hops balanced by a solid malt bill and English yeast strain.

Think a range of beers so packed full of flavour, youll want to drink them all day long, and at only around 4% ABV, you can, and without even falling off your Henriksdaal. 

(Note: This beer will be served in bottles not from the teat of any goats)

Andrew CatherallComment
RECENT DEVELOPMENTS

It's been a little while since the last post, so here's an update to let you know that the THREE HILLS brewery is under construction, and scheduled to be open for sales by the end of May. 

Check out these pics of the construction process: 

 The 36sqm bare shell.

The 36sqm bare shell.

 The ceiling going in... There's quite a nice bit of loft space which will be used for storage, or maybe even a secret tasting room!

The ceiling going in... There's quite a nice bit of loft space which will be used for storage, or maybe even a secret tasting room!

 Stud work and insulation of exterior walls in progress....

Stud work and insulation of exterior walls in progress....

 The drain channel in place ready for floor installation next week!

The drain channel in place ready for floor installation next week!

There's definitely at least a couple more weeks of building to be done, before this place resembles a brewery, but things are plodding along. In other news, the brewhouse vessels are en route, the control panel is being built and the brewers license should be granted any time now.

Exciting times to come!

 

Andrew CatherallComment
THREE HILLS BREWERY DESIGN

Instead of buying a cheap (and potentially low quality) 200l system from a Chinese producer, I decided I would design and make my own customized brewhouse, which will end up cheaper and better suited to my brewing needs. Here's the design:

 The design... excuse my poor illustrations.

The design... excuse my poor illustrations.

 

If you cant decipher my handwriting, or are interested in a bit more info, here are some details about the key components of which the system comprises:

1. A 200L hot liquor tank with an 3000kw electric element*, digital temperature control and sight glass. Clad in thermowrap to keep it insulated.  This is what I will use to store my strike and sparge liquor. 

2. A 200L mash/lauter tun, also thermowrap clad, with a false bottom, sparge arm and temperature dial. This is where I will extract all those nice sugars from the top quality English Maris Otter base malt, combined with speciality malts from around world. It's pretty big, so i can brew all those ideas for high ABV beers i've got floating around my mind. 

3. A small 50L vessel with a HERMS (Heat Exchange Recirculation Mash System) coil, 3000kw electric element  and temperature control. This is cool because it will allow me to do accurate step infusion mashes by changing the temperature of the wort, which is constantly being recirculated. It basically gives me full control over mash temperature, meaning the enzymes can effectively break down starch molecules into fermentable and non-fermentable sugars. I should, here, dip my hat to Tobi, the brewmaster who taught me the ways of the Bavarian step-infusion mash programs.

4. A 200L brew kettle with whirlpooling accessory, sight glass and temperature dial. This is where I will boil the lautered wort and add hops or any other flavour addition I feel like. I would have liked to go bigger with this, but I just can't seem to find any bigger pots. If anyone happens to know a supplier of large stainless steel pots in the uk, let me know!

5. The hop-back and Plate Heat Exchanger (PHE). These two bad boys from Blichmann engineering are really great. The hop back will allow me to pass the boiled wort through a vessel containing whole flower hops, which will make the final beer extra flavoursome and delicious. The badass therminator PHE will cool my wort to 20 degrees celsius in less than 20 mins, whilst the hot water from the exchange will be fed right back into the HLT for the next brew. BANG.

6. Finally are the fermenters. I'll be using a combination of 200L and 300L so that occasionally i can brew back to back to make slightly bigger batches of those beers that are really popular. They're made from polyethylene, which is not as good as stainless, but i've brewed for years using plastic and had few problems. Plus the price point is just so much better.

If all goes to plan, I will start putting this all together next week, and have it finished by the end of January, which will mean the first batches will be ready by late February. 

 

*Decided to go for 2 2000KW heating elements instead of one 3000kw. This gives me the option of either turning on one element the night before brewing in preparation for the next day, or, if I want to do an impromptu brew, smash both elements on in the morning, which will heat the water to strike temperature in about 3.30 mins.

 

Andrew CatherallComment
LOGO SNEAK PREVIEW

So after a fair few revisions the logo is nearly done. I'm pretty happy with it, but it needs a little tweaking before it will be ready to put up on the website. Here's a sneak preview anyway:

As you can see, it full incorporates the characters 三 and 山 (THREE HILLS in Chinese) and kind of looks like a devil's trident or the bottom of a pint glass. Both work very nicely for the THREE HILLS brand!

Thing's are getting pretty exciting! Yesterday, I finished the brewhouse design, which I will post later today. Now, I really can't wait to start putting it all together and start brewing up some magic!

 

Andrew CatherallComment
THREE HILLS BREWING IS CONCEIVED!

FIRST BLOG POST EVER. HERE IT GOES..

It took a while to choose a name, but i've finally decided on: THREE HILLS BREWING. 

The name is fitting for a couple of reasons: Primarily because it references the Neolithic barrows (ancient tombs) that are located in my village of Woodford where the brewery will be built (if all goes to plan with Environmental health, Custom's and Excise, Planning Permission etc etc etc). Apparently,  the three hill's site was not only tombs, but was also used for "cult activities" relating to fertility and the dead. Let's hope my beers will eventually be used to promote fertility and maybe even to send off the dead too.  Do the cults of old proud and all that. 

Another reason why this name ls great is that it sounds pretty good in Chinese: 三山  pronounced San Shan.  I lived in China for the past 7 years or so, so its good to have a name that can be used should I ever want to return and attempt to smash the Chinese market! Thanks to my good friend Josiah Garetson, the Chinese characters have been integrated into the logo design to make a pretty cool, modern logo, which will shortly be added to the website. 

So thats' that. Name done. Logo on it's way. Licences to come. Brewery to built soon.

FIRST BLOG POST DONE.