If you’re looking for the recipe for Five Barrel Brewing’s latest beer, you just need to check out their Instagram feed.
While he was working on the recipe for the beer – a New England IPA – brewer Phil O’Shea posted a photo to the social media site.
A homebrewer with the user name of bluebettybrewery asked him to share the recipe.
And that’s just what Mr O’Shea did – explained all the ingredients and how much of each to use. Even gave advice on how to brew it.
Mr O’Shea doesn’t see anything wrong with sharing the details of a beer before he’s started making it.
“It’s not as if another commercial brewery’s going to take that recipe and go away and do anything with it,” Mr O’Shea said.
“The craft beer industry is pretty friendly overall and nobody has anything to gain by taking someone else’s recipe and creating beer..
“I’m not doing anything groundbreaking with that recipe. I’m building on the techniques and ideas that other people have come up with already.”
He said that, when it came to recipes, professional brewers weren’t always the best at keeping secrets.
And that was actually a great help for those making beer at home in the garage or under the stairs.
“For me I started out as a homebrewer and I greatly appreciated it when breweries would share their recipes and ideas so you could always use these as a baseline to test your own abilities,” he said.
“The recipe itself just gives people an indication of how to go about making it but then everyone puts their own twist on things.
“There are so few people out there who look to reproduced something perfectly.”
The New England IPA is the latest craze in the often-fickle craft beer world.
They tend to be hazy or cloudy with a flavour often described as “juicy” – there’s a few similarities between it and pulpy fruit juice.
While he’d made a few of them as a homebrewer, Mr O’Shea was a little reluctant to crank one out under the Five Barrels banner.
“I don’t want to have a brewery set up as something that just chases fads and trends,” he said.
“I want to set my own path and brew the beers that I really want to brew.”
He thought about it for a while and decided that this beer wasn’t so much a fad as part of a broader trend.
“It’s less of a fad and more probably a trend in brewing where people are making beers that are hoppy but not too bitter and I think this really lends itself well to that idea,” he said.
“It’s about making beer that’s drinkable and not necessarily trendy.
“That was probably the tipping point for me to brew that beer.”