Grin and beer it all! New artisanal breweries in Bengaluru, and Craft Drinks India
The collaboration beers that I wrote about in my previous columns are finally drawing close to actual launch. Zero 40’s California Common goes on tap on June 30, and Biere Street’s Roggenbiere goes on tap on July 3. The Brewtalks event at both breweries is open to beer lovers, and if you are interested in attending either event, just get in touch and let me know!
In Bengaluru, The Rig on Sarjapur Road opened their doors last Saturday, and it was a heavily attended event, with almost 800 customers. There were five beers on tap - an India Pale Ale (IPA), stout, Hefe, Saison and a cider. A proper cider at last in namma uru! The drink is sweet for sure, but also has a bit of tartness - and this is how, I believe, a cider really ought to be. Though without a filter on site, the brew does have a bit of haziness, which takes away from its visual appeal.
The IPA is quite highly hopped, and at about 50 IBU (measure of bitterness), it does get a bit cloying. I tried the second batch that are as yet in the fermenters, and I assure you, that IPA is going to turn out great. The Hefe is a recipe that won first prize at an invitational held at the Independence Brewing Company in Pune last year, so can’t complain there. But my favourite pick of the night was the stout. With a very balanced among of chocolate-coffee ratio, this was an easy drinker. The only issue I found was that the body is a bit on the low side, and the alcohol by volume is right up there, at 7.5%.
All in all, I expect great things from this brewery, and can’t wait for more. They also have a separate restaurant out front called The Hidden Home, which serves Rig’s beers, for those of you who want a quieter place to chill. I quite like the biryani and the desserts served too.
Float an idea
Closer to town is a new place that opens in July, called the Float. This is on the same road as Wanderers, in Kalyan Nagar, HRBR Layout, and is sure to give beer lovers in the area a proper craft beer experience. There aren’t too many craft beer offerings in these parts as yet, and this should make for a great hang-out alternative to The Local.
Float is on a smaller piece of land, so they have made up for things by building three floors that are quite spread out. I hear the food is going to be quite quirky, though I haven’t had a chance to taste anything yet. On the beer front, I’m not allowed to say what’s going to be served, but I can guarantee that when you visit, you will be floored by at least two of their beers. But more on this place once they open!
Back to the future
For those of you who are interested, an upcoming event called Craft Drinks India will be held at the White Orchid Convention Center, next to Manyata Tech Park, on the July 4 and 5. A number of industry leaders are expected to be speaking about the past and the future of craft beer in India.
There will also be a sensory workshop, hosted by an expert from the VLB institution in Berlin, on July 5. The cost to enroll is `5,000, and in my opinion, worth the price if you want to learn and understand more about how to identify flavours and aromas in beer.
A number of equipment suppliers and raw material suppliers will be exhibiting their wares as well, so it should be fun to just walk around the exhibition, to work up a beer appetite! I’ll be present on both days, so hit me up, and we can grab a pint together. Happy drinking folks!
George Jacob is the Founder of The Beer Chronicles.