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evilredlight
12-29-2003, 02:45 PM
I just got a book for christmas about organic breweries

The only organic beer I have tried Is St.Peters from england

Anyone else tried an organic?

wortchillergoal
12-29-2003, 02:47 PM
I have not but the grocery store I work for sells an organic brand. I can't remember whose it is. I'll find out in case you would like to do a taste comparison.

threecb
12-29-2003, 02:50 PM
Wolavers (sp?) in VT is an organic brewery.
They're now housed with Otter Creek...

I had the Pale Ale over the summer. It wasn't bad...

wortchillergoal
12-29-2003, 03:59 PM
Originally posted by threecb
Wolavers (sp?) in VT is an organic brewery.
They're now housed with Otter Creek...

I had the Pale Ale over the summer. It wasn't bad...

That is the brand we sell.

evilredlight
01-02-2004, 09:26 AM
I had the Pale Ale over the summer. It wasn't bad... [/B]

This is the sort of response I expected

I assume organic breweries are trying to appeal to the lowest common denominator, not make a good beer.

Tweek
01-02-2004, 09:49 AM
I have made several organic beers. Most of which were quite excellent. The brew shop that I live by now, I would occasionally buy stuff from in the past when I lived not too far from here. They are 100% organic on their core ingredients. The reason I dont shop there all the time is that the organic crowd sometimes will sacrifice quality in return for organic. This store wont even carry non organic ingredients. Thats fine if that is the way you choose to do things, more power to ya I say. That being said I always want to make the best quality beer I can make I really dont care if the ingredients are organic or not, to me its all about the end product. If the best ingredients happen to be organic then cool if not thats cool too.

my .02

Theakston
01-02-2004, 10:04 AM
I visited this pub last time I was visiting my original home town of Manchester. All their beers are classified as organic. They are also vegan - so they don't use fish bladders (isinglass) to clear their beers, preferring to leave them slightly hazy.


I tried several of their beers and all were excellent, especially the Manchester Bitter that reminded me of how Boddingtons used to taste before they were taken over by a mutlinational corporation (now interbrew).
Here is their website (http://www.marblebeers.co.uk/index.html)

Apparently while the barley is relatively easy to grow organically the hops are a problem. Some strains work better than others, the Target variety seems to be the major hop of choice for organics.

barley ben
01-02-2004, 10:30 AM
The one shop I frequent has a few Sam Smith organics but I always seem to find something else to buy instead. Maybe I'll stop by and get one so I can see what the difference is. What is the difference supposed to be? Maybe I'm missing something, but do you really need chemicals and such to grow quality barley and hops?

newportstorm
01-02-2004, 10:38 AM
I've had 3 of the 4 styles Wolaver's brews. The Pale is drinkable, the IPA isn't bad at all and the Brown Ale was probably my favorite of the bunch - the Brown being very tasty on tap. They released an Oatmeal Stout late last year that I have yet to see at any of my regular haunts.

And while I do not grow my own grains/hops or consider myself pro-organic per se, I do think there a quite a few requirements to being "certified organic". And I would assume the larger malt/hops growers use artificial fertilizers and pest controls on their large fields. Just speculation.

Cheers!

danno
01-02-2004, 12:20 PM
IIRC, all of Pinkus' beers are organic...

Stodbrew
01-02-2004, 01:02 PM
There are a couple/few organic breweries in No. California. One is a brewpub in Ukiah. Not only are the beers organic, but all the food served is as well. I haven't been there, so I don't know much about it, but I have heard good things.

The other one is Butte Creek Brewing in Chico. They bottle their beer, but I'm not sure how widely distributed they are. I haven't had their beer in years, but as I recall, they are pretty good.

Cheers,


Steve

threecb
01-06-2004, 10:41 AM
Mill St. in toronto makes an organic ale. Pretty lame beer in cute little
bottles geared towards female drinkers (my wife was insulted).

The rest of their line, particularily the Tankhouse Pale (not Organic) was very good! They didn't have the Coffee Porter though...dissapointed...

chazwicke
01-06-2004, 12:19 PM
I think the Saint Peter's beers are good.

bigmf
01-06-2004, 12:45 PM
What is an organic beer anyway? If it means no additives or perservatives thats great. Why don't they just say it follows the reinheitsgebot or some thing like that. To purify your water source to where it does not contain any non-organic material (Burton Salts anyone?) would be difficult. On that note is water even an organic compound? I don't think it is, but I could be wrong.

Sorry for the rant I just don't understand why people think that "all natural ingredients" or "organic" is better than what you have always gotten. For example there is a commercial up here for a soap. Someone touches many different bars of soap and then a peice of litmus paper. The paper turns blue for all but the distilled water and the soap they are selling. The advertisers think this is somehow good. I think the soap has the cleaning abilities of distilled water.

So I guess I'd be just as happy if my beer were made by some guy in a lab coat mixing chemicals in beakers as long as it tastes good to me. (and doesn't turn my skin a different colour).

M.

(Sorry again for the rant):mad:

chazwicke
01-06-2004, 01:03 PM
Agreed. I try most different beers that i run across. I could care less if it is organic or not as long as it tastes good.

Payson
01-06-2004, 01:31 PM
When people try to bombard me with "organic" I always remind them that poison ivy is also organic.

studentofbeer
01-06-2004, 04:44 PM
bigmf, i agree that taste is what matters most, but there is something to be said for voting with your dollar for things you care about, and some people care about using natural processes with natural things.

The funny thing for me is that regarding beer i somehow feel like organic beer must be inferior. i generally avoid it when i see it in stores-- i guess because there isnt much of it in varieties im interested in trying, although i did have an organic caledonian beer i liked (i bought it b/c i love caledonian beer and its the only one i can find in the US).

I think its a noble pursuit to create a beer where none of the ingredients have ever come into contact with chemicals, but im much more interested in things like organic meat or vegetables where the fact that no hormones, antibiotics or chemical fertilizers were used actually could have some impact on my health.

i dont really see the benefit to organic beer when most of what i drink is already made only from water, barley, yeast and hops. i dont really care if pesticides or something was used to keep the crop healthy as long as it turns into good beer. but for some reason if i were to eat barley plain i would maybe feel organic barley was better. its just a weird perception thing for me that when the ingredients get turned into beer i am less interested than if consuming the ingredients on their own. The organic label doesnt make me feel any better about a beer for some reason.

bigmf
01-06-2004, 04:58 PM
I guess what I was saying is that the term organic is so misused and underdefined as to be meaningless. Hops, barley and yeast are organic in the widely accepted definition of the word. The term "organic food" means something else. If my barley was malted with untreated water, or the beer brewed with untreated water I might get pretty nervous about drinking it.

Anyway no more ranting for me.

M.

chazwicke
01-06-2004, 07:28 PM
Rants are good. Thats one of the reasons for this board. Some of our best threads derive from rants. Take a look at the smoking thread. :)

newportstorm
01-07-2004, 08:46 AM
Originally posted by studentofbeer
I think its a noble pursuit to create a beer where none of the ingredients have ever come into contact with chemicals, but im much more interested in things like organic meat or vegetables where the fact that no hormones, antibiotics or chemical fertilizers were used actually could have some impact on my health.

i dont really see the benefit to organic beer when most of what i drink is already made only from water, barley, yeast and hops. i dont really care if pesticides or something was used to keep the crop healthy as long as it turns into good beer.

Just playing devil's advocate here - not trying to tear anyone down. You don't want hormones, antibiotics or chemical fertilizers in your meat and veggies, but pesticides are OK in your beer?! Also, ever consider chemical fertilizers that might be used to grow that barley and hops? And the chemicals that then leech into the groundwater?

I don't advocate either, organic or non. I simply advocate good beer. And don't discount a beer because of the "organic" label. It just might turn out to be a new favorite.

Cheers!

Tweek
01-07-2004, 09:26 AM
many times (not all) the problem with organice fruits, vegetables and grains is that they are not as fresh. The either have some insect wear and tear or some other thing wrong with them. This has also been my experience with organic beer supllies. I many times find them to be of lesser quality than their non organic counter part. I also live in a hippy Mecca so I would expect that there would be the best of the best organic stuff here. There definately is a ton of it. :D

fretlessman71
01-07-2004, 10:34 AM
Organic produce doesn't have the chemicals added to the soil to help it grow, nor does it have any preservatives to keep it fresh. I'm pretty sure that's the basic definition.

This means that you're going to get a slightly smaller yield from your crop, and it's not going to last as long. There are those who believe that this is a GOOD thing, and I can't really say I disagree, but I don't go crazy looking for it in the stores. I CAN say that the juice I make with organic fruits and veggies tastes much better than the standard stuff. I hope the same is true with beer... maybe I oughta get some of the Sam Smith's stuff I've been seeing (one lager, one ale) and give it a whirl!

studentofbeer
01-07-2004, 12:11 PM
i think my problem with organic in terms of beer is marketing. i feel like calling it organic in big labels at least gives the impression that the organic quality of the beer is more important than the style, what it tastes like, etc.

i would be more interested to see a brewer take one of their normal lines and turn it organic rather than produce a beer whose only quality seems to be its organic ingredients and not its flavor.

Maybe this is hard to do though, because as someone mentioned its difficult to grow hops organically? or more likely it doesnt make sense to them to sell an organic version of something with a slightly higher price than the standard version? still, brewing a "regular" and "organic" version of the same brew would at least give consumers the choice if there is a market for organic beer at all.

chazwicke
01-07-2004, 03:29 PM
I would be interested in seeing a side by side comparison of the same beer brewed with organic and usual ingredients. Just to see if there was any difference in flavor.

evilredlight
01-11-2004, 02:15 PM
The term "organic " also has social and enviromental responsibility aspects that are often ignored.
Shipping an organic item around the world uses more energy to grow, package and transport the item than the energy that the food puts back into the energy cycle.

There are more aspects but this is one that is often ignored.

So technically in Canada we can never consume an organic banana, because bananas are not produced locally.

The same follows for beer. It is best to buy beer produced locally because you are not consuming fossil fuels to get the beer into your hands.

Out of all the terrible things we do to the enviroment, the one change we can make, that would vastly improve the world, at least enviromentally, is in our diet. Beer is a small part of this, for some anyway, but every bit counts.

TheBeerSnob
01-24-2004, 07:22 PM
A source of well crafted beers that are brewed with organic ingredients can be found here:
http://www.fishbrewing.com/

Their Fish Tale Ales are quite good.

I also know that many Alaskan brewers strive for organic, such as Homer Brewing Company, Homer, Alaska
Great Bear Brewing, Wasilla, Alaska
Sleeping Lady Brewery, Anchorage, Alaska

Maybe not all, but certainly some if not most...

homebrewin' it
04-05-2005, 07:55 AM
Originally posted by threecb
Wolavers (sp?) in VT is an organic brewery.
They're now housed with Otter Creek...

I had the Pale Ale over the summer. It wasn't bad...

their Oatmeal Stout is the very best stout I have ever tried(I've tried a lot)!

threecb
04-05-2005, 08:40 AM
I agree with you on the Oaty Stout. It's the best of their line. I've heard the Wit was decent, too.

chazwicke
04-05-2005, 09:03 AM
I've seen the Wolaver's line but have not tried them. Maybe I should. I once visited Otter Creek but that was many moons ago. I always liked the Long Trail Ale best from Vermont.

Arassuil
12-19-2007, 12:35 AM
Mountain Goat Brewing (http://www.goatbeer.com.au/) puts out some darn fine tasting beers.
I enjoyed their IPA not too long ago.

L.H.H.H.Brown
12-24-2007, 10:42 AM
North Coast has an organic Trippel. Found it at Whole Foods. I thought it was very good.

nelstrodomus
01-17-2008, 10:25 AM
Originally posted by evilredlight
This is the sort of response I expected

I assume organic breweries are trying to appeal to the lowest common denominator, not make a good beer.

Lowest common denominator?? I know what it means but explains what YOU meant by that. I am neither an advocate of organic products or non-organically produced, but last time I checked, pilsneresque lagers like AB and Miller were marketed and are appealing to the lowest common denominator of highschoolers, frat boys and the like...

mrtrav
09-23-2008, 10:24 PM
There's a place in SF that does organic beers. The brewery is Thirsty Bear. I have only had their beers at the actual brewery, so I'm not sure how much they distribute. But if you are in town I recommend checking them out.

darylM
09-24-2008, 12:48 PM
My first bit:

My father invests in an organic farm so I have some knowledge of what it means to be organic. They can use fertilizers but they have to be based on something thats natural like Kelp or compost. The same goes for incecticides but most prefer to drop praying matise eggs since they work all season long. Organic farmers tend to have less middle men between them and the consumer. This means the farmer can get more money per yeild and we shouldn't see a difference in price.

My grandfather, not an organic farmer, couldn't spray any chemical on a patch and the plants were much bushier and healthy looking. He also started using half of the chemical he normally used. Besides saving money, wildlife started visiting again. Note that birds can eat a lot of insects.

The second bit:

I question how much better oraganic beers would be in the taste department. There is a lot of processing going on before you can pour your beer. Any homebrewer on the board watch it happen everytime a new batch is made. I would buy organic because of the ecological benefits of organic farming, not because of the beer itself.

Banjoman
09-27-2008, 04:22 PM
I had the opportunity last spring to have an Organic Amber Ale at the Eel River Brewery in Fortuna CA.
They state they are America's First Certified Organic Brewery.
Very delicious brew with earthy tones and ample hops flavor for my palate.

Too bad I can't get this brew in the Great Lakes state.

East Coaster
10-15-2008, 01:46 PM
This is the sort of response I expected

I assume organic breweries are trying to appeal to the lowest common denominator, not make a good beer.

currently Organic can not obtain the flavour profile that other malts have. I like the idea of Organic beer and am open to trying them but it is easy to be fooled by the name if you are trying a organic beer it might only be the malt that is organic and have little to do with the hops or other non-organic practises that are used in the brewery.

East Coaster
10-15-2008, 01:49 PM
on another note my homebrewing mentor gets all of his meat from a organic farmer and I have probably had the best feast's I could ever imagine.

newportstorm
10-15-2008, 02:54 PM
currently Organic can not obtain the flavour profile that other malts have. I like the idea of Organic beer and am open to trying them but it is easy to be fooled by the name if you are trying a organic beer it might only be the malt that is organic and have little to do with the hops or other non-organic practises that are used in the brewery.

Bingo. Ask your favorite organic brewery if they use 100% organic ingredients. Willing to bet they do not. Some may try, but still must supplement with non-organic ingredients at times - esp. hops. Others openly support regulations that would allow them to always use non-organic materials, which to me goes completely against what most of them preach on their websites/beer labels/etc.

whiskeyfoot
06-23-2009, 07:35 PM
Here in Florida we have the Orlando Brewery, some kind of certified Organic brewery. I can't say all their beer is bad, but I don't really think much of it as good either. They seem to be trying to cater to a certain crowd down here, and like i've read throughout this thread, they seem to be more concerned about its organic label than the flavor on my tongue.

critch
06-25-2009, 04:21 PM
i run an organic brewery in liverpool england (14bbl)and our beers, just like the marble organic in manchester are made to the highest standard.
admittedly some of our hops are globally sourced because of the limited amount of organic hop growers around, however the majority of ingredients are from within a hundred mile radius of my brewplant.

as for lowest common denominator? utter pish man. we leave that to the likes of coors miller dudweasel carlsberg and carling

were only a few months old and were up for awards already so id say the quality is not an issue........

critch
06-25-2009, 04:31 PM
currently Organic can not obtain the flavour profile that other malts have. I like the idea of Organic beer and am open to trying them but it is easy to be fooled by the name if you are trying a organic beer it might only be the malt that is organic and have little to do with the hops or other non-organic practises that are used in the brewery.

i cannot agree with this i contract brew for a local inorganic brewery, the quality of our six row grain is superior to the cheap two row bollix he insists we use....

he uses a lot of chemical adjuncts that ive done away with and ive had good reports off the new beer.

95% of the ingredients need to be organic to get an organic certification.
we filter our water through charcoal(yes organicly sourced) our yeast has an organic certification and the only compromise is in a few kg of hops in a few brews.......

chazwicke
06-26-2009, 08:58 AM
Critch, Will you be represented at GBBF? I'm so looking forward to it. It's been a few years since I last was able to get there.

Windigstadt
07-07-2009, 04:58 PM
I could care less whether a beer is organic or not, but while on vacation in Scotland last month I had the chance to visit Black Isle (http://www.blackislebrewery.com/) brewery, which I believe is entirely organic, and was thoroughly impressed. They don't export to the States yet but said they'll be expanding with plans to do so soon. If you're really bored, you can read my long-winded post about my visit to Black Isle (as well as Cairngorm, another awesome Scottish brewery) here (http://chibebrau.blogspot.com/2009/06/scotland-trip-recap-part-4-black-isle.html).

HogieWan
07-07-2009, 06:41 PM
Every organic beer I have tried from the US has the same off-flavor that I can't get past. I haven't ad any in a while but I remember them all being the same. I have had St Peter's and Sam Smith's lager that were organic, but they tasted like any other brew from the respective brewery.

Anyone else find this from the US organics?

xtalman
07-09-2009, 04:58 PM
Every organic beer I have tried from the US has the same off-flavor that I can't get past. I haven't ad any in a while but I remember them all being the same. I have had St Peter's and Sam Smith's lager that were organic, but they tasted like any other brew from the respective brewery.

Anyone else find this from the US organics?

Have not tried that many but as mentioned about Eel River makes some pretty good organic brews. Never noticed on off flavor.

HogieWan
07-10-2009, 04:22 PM
Have not tried that many but as mentioned about Eel River makes some pretty good organic brews. Never noticed on off flavor.

IIRC, those are some of the worst offenders.