In early November Joey Penkala, the head brewer at Lost Province brewing Company, invited me to shadow him and help with their 500th brew!
I have been on brewery tours and have heard how to make beer, but Joey let me participate in the process! I stirred the malted barley in the hot water where all the sugars were absorbed into the water.
Then it was transferred over to begin the boil. While we waited for it to start boiling we cleaned out the malted barley and put it outside for a farmer to pick up.
Once we had a boil I got to add the first hop, then we waited a bit and added some spices and juice and then waited a bit more and added another hop. Then we moved it over to where it would sit while the yeast did it’s job and made alcohol!!
This is a poster hanging up in the brew room that shows how intense the brewing process is. There were so many levers and hoses that Joey would hook up, unhook and then hook up to something else. At times I had to follow where the hose was going, but Joey did it with ease. He has done it a time or two or 500+!
Ed the owner was back there with us helping, cleaning, working on the computer and just being involved in the brew.
While I was there I enjoyed a wood fired pizza and got to try the beers they had on draft.
Pictured here is their Lost Province IPA. It is hoppy, piney, floral with a little citrus. It’s pretty tasty! And look at that pizza! One of the cans I was excited to try was Fire On The Mountain. It is an amber ale with jalapeños. I got a lot of caramel and toffee at the beginning, but the heat came through on the finish. If you like beer a little spicy (and I do), then this one is for you!
Above is their Fat Bastard Oatmeal Stout. This is how I ended my brew day. I had gotten a taste of it earlier but I wanted the full experience. Chocolate, oatmeal and coffee round out this one! So good!!
So fast forward about 5ish weeks and I went back up to purchase the fruit of “my” labor. Mostly Joey’s labor.
Here it is!! St. Nick’s Reward! It is a winter warmer coming in at 6.2% abv. This is a seasonal beer that they make 2 batches of every year to enjoy around Christmas time. If you listen to “Between Two Kegs” on Lost Province Brewing Company’s Facebook page, you can hear the whole story behind this beer. Ed the owner was asked what kind of beer did he think Santa would enjoy. So he came up with this brew with that in mind, as Santa’s reward for bringing joy to all the little ones around the world.
It is a rich dark brown color but drinks light to medium body. There is a strong malt back ground with cinnamon and orange being the strongest flavors coming through. There are other seasonal spices present as well.
This would pair well with just about any food, but a nice pretzel or something bready would go really well with it. Mexican food with a little spiciness I think would enhance this beer as well.
So I didn’t mess this beer up! It is very tasty! Thanks again to Joey and Ed for allowing me to come learn about brewing and what Lost Province has to offer! If you are in Boone, NC this is definitely a place you should stop in to have a pint and a bite!