29 November 2016
The second week of July seems like a long time ago now, for many reasons, but it was then that we launched our epic quest to find the next-level of homebrewing talent with #HomeBrewDog – the competition run in conjunction with Tesco. Mirroring James and Martin taking first, second, third and fourth prizes in a Tesco contest back in the day, we decided to pay it forward and partner up to uncover a homebrew hero to win some truly life-changing prizes.
And after the long – but rewarding – judging process, we have a winner.
For his fascinating entry inspired by the historically high-gravity porters and stouts of the Caribbean, our #HomeBrewDog victor is Tom Doyle, from Dublin. Tom’s beer – Tropic Thunder – is a 7.0% throwback to a time when stouts brewed for tropical markets were fruitier and with more restrained bitterness than other foreign export stouts. To achieve this, his beer embraces two fascinating twists – a higher percentage of Crystal malt than expected to raise the body, and the addition of sweet orange peel added at the end of the boil.
As part of the #HomeBrewDog prize, Tom will head over to our Ellon brewhouse at the end of this month to reproduce his entry, which after being packaged will be sold exclusively in Tesco and our BrewDog online shop in the first few months of 2017. It will also be launched on draft across our network of UK BrewDog Bars, where Tom will be holding court for the official launch at a bar of his choice alongside a curated bar list for the evening chosen by himself!
Another prize of #HomeBrewDog got everyone talking – the chance to win a job with BrewDog within our brewing team. Well, Tom will stay in Ellon for a bit longer than a single brewday, as he takes part in a unique trial to showcase his skills and meet our brewers! We’ll keep you posted as to how that goes, but seeing as he volunteered at a local brewery in Dublin to learn more about his hobby, we know that he has the passion and love of beer to do well. Speaking of the Irish capital, they had a sleepless night when we informed Tom that he had won…
“When I first read the email congratulating me I thought it was a prank and had to read it ten times over before I jumped out of my bed at two in the morning shouting and waking up the housemates about winning the competition (I had just come back from a work night out). I remember not being able to sleep that night I found out. Words cannot describe how happy I was to win this competition and have the chance to meet some of the most influential people in the brewing world.“
Thanks to Tom for taking the time to enter – and that goes for every single person who dialled up a recipe on their homebrew kit and sent it to us. The final roll-call was a staggering 307 entries! Unfortunately we can’t give feedback on all of them, but the dozen finalists will receive our thoughts on their creations, to hopefully aid their homebrewing careers. Those that finished ahead of the pack in that regard are the following twelve, so expect an email from us on how your creations rocked very soon!
Wolter Jonkman (HB-00077 - BockX)
Mike Hewison (HB-00386 - 41 degree)
Olivier Chabot (HB-00460 - Pilsner Ale)
Ben Kassous (HB-00489 - Gallus IPA)
Juan Jose Tur Lahiguera (HB-00501 - Deepness)
David Piggford (HB-00512 - Ris-ky Business)
Lasse Nielsen (HB-00569 - Sunshine Reggae)
Rien Polak (HB-00582 - Mosaic/Equinox IPA)
Liam Millar (HB-00756 - Tropical Hopical)
Koen Demeulemeester (HB-00801 - Mint)
Simon James (HB-00856 - Idris Melba)
Sebastian Hinz, Franz Steuer (HB-00867 - Constance)
Don’t forget, Tom Doyle’s victorious entry will be out after the New Year, an old-fashioned stout perfect for the winter months. Congratulations again to him – our #HomeBrewDog champion! Thanks for everyone who entered, and for everyone who didn’t win we hope it has inspired you to keep on brewing…