Beer Makers: The Hobbyist - Brewing beer in your kitchen

DIY beer

Diana

Foto’s voor Beer Makers: The Hobbyist - Brewing beer in your kitchen

Andre at the Trollenkelder, Gent

Andre Goderich is a linguist who works in Austronesian historical linguistics and specialises in Atayalic languages. Now he has taken up the challenge of brewing some amazing craft beer.

How would you describe your relationship with beer? Is it serious?

Andre Goderich: "I was more interested in wine than in beer, until last summer when I developed a taste for Abbey style beer during my stay in Belgium. Afterwards a friend of mine introduced me to IPAs (India Pale Ale), and I've since become something of a hophead. Right now I can't imagine my life without craft beer."

Right now I can't imagine my life without craft beer.

Understanding beer

How did this all start? You didn't have any left in the fridge?

"The first time I ever brewed an alcoholic beverage was a very light mead without any special equipment. I got interested in the process of brewing, because it gave me the opportunity to better understand beer, and try some of my own crazy ideas. I only started about two months ago, and I'm still buying brewing equipment bit by bit."

 So did you need to learn some special skills to start a-brewing?

"The brewing process in and of itself isn't extremely difficult. For my first batch, I used a method called brew-in-a-bag, where you put the malt into a huge bag and brew the wort like a huge cup of tea. The most tedious part of brewing is cleaning your equipment, but it's also the most important, as dirty equipment is likely to harbor bacteria that will spoil your next batch!"

Few ingredients

What is beer's most fascinating feature?

"I think one of the most fascinating things about beer is that with so few ingredients - malt, yeast, hops, water - there's infinite variability, and craft brewing and homebrewing provide endless opportunities to explore new recipes and try new brewing methods."

Drum roll... what is your favourite beer?

"That's a tough one. It depends on my mood. I really like Belgian Trappists, both dubbels and quads, and of these my favorite is Trappist Rochefort 10. I also enjoy beers by Mikkeller, Brew Dog, and the New Zealand brewery Tuatara, among many others."

For my first batch I used a method called brew-in-a-bag,  where you put the malt into a huge bag and brew the wort like a huge cup of tea.

Glad to see Belgian beers are in your top favourites! Otherwise it would have been awkward.. Our last question, you use a specific app. Tell us more.

"I use an app called Untappd, and it's great for keeping track of beers you drink. Sometimes if you've already tried a lot of beers, you forget if you've tried a particular beer, or if it was good. This app is really helpful in this regard, as well as providing all kinds of stats. It also has other functions, such as following your friends' beer adventures."