Beer, Bars & Brewers #7

Beers, beers, beers. This week’s BBB is short and sweet but important nonetheless.  Researchers found cancer fighting properties in hops, a Scottish craft brewery launches the world’s first “spreadable beer”, and hops prices are rising.

Prenzlauer Berg will soon be home to Birra, a new bar serving finest Italian craft beers. Led by Rom’s Manuele Colonna and Milano’s Giampaolo Sangiorgi the bar will not only offer beer but also traditional Italian small plates and charcuterie. A total of 16 taps will always offer beers from Birrificio Lambrate, including Montestella, Lambrate, Gaina, and Sant’Ambroeus. The official opening is April 30th, come and join in for what sounds to be a wonderful celebration!

Cancer fighting Hops

New research conducted by scientists at the University of Idaho shows that hops are able to fight diseases. Quoting Eurekalert! and the American Cancer Society’s press release, explains that “researchers are discovering more about how to extract healthful chemicals from hops, most specifically humalones, alpha acids that have anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties.” Soon the researchers hope to “be able to synthesize these compounds to use in drugs to fight cancer and other inflammatory diseases”.

Scottish Craft Brewer Launches “World’s first Spreadable Beer”

Some marmalade with that ale, good friends? Not to worry, Scottish brewery Innis & Gunn has got you covered. Their “spreadable beer” (ugh, what marketing department approved this) just opened its second Scottish Beer Kitchen in Dundee and to mark the launch, the brewery launched “Marm & Ale – the world’s first beer marmelade”. The Herarld notes that the marmalade is made by combining Innes & Gunn’s oak-aged IPA with Dundee’s “finest preserve”.

A new, marmalade flavoured IPA was also launched. Innis & Gunn’s founder and master brew Dougal Sharp says “Launching in this great city has provided us with an opportunity to do what we do best: push the boundaries of what’s possible with beer through innovation and experimentation. That’s why we’ve been hard at work brewing a marmalade IPA and even creating spreadable beer for adventurous foodies”.

The Beer Kitchen will heavily focus on pairing good food with great beers. Sharp continues, “We are not simply satisfied with telling people about beer – we want to show them too. This is why we’ve installed an exposed beer cellar and tanks serving the freshest beers straight from the brewery”. We’ll be bookmarking this for our next trip to Dundee!

After the Shortage comes the Downfall

… or, in this case, the increase of prices. Due to low harvest and stretched supplies the price of hops has soared over the past year. The drinks business explains that smaller breweries with lower margins are less able to absorb supply price changes and thus, will have to pass on the price of more expensive ingredients to the consumer. “The price of some of the most popular hops has gone up as much as 50%, while other varieties have seen a five-fold increase”. Stephan Barth, of the Barth Haas Group says “Europe will need at least an average harvest in 2016 otherwise we could see serious supply shortages”.

Large brewers buying out small craft breweries is part of the problem. For example: the risk of AB InBev and Heineken outpricing smaller breweries is incredibly high. Rising prices are however, good for the growers. “Evin O’Riordain, founder of Kernel Brewery in London, said that while the shortages were a ‘worry’, the rising hop prices could encourage and enable growers to produce better quality produce”.


Foto: Bottles via Shutterstock. Post: Tim Klöcker.

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