30 March 2017
From Penn Brewery:
We are over the moon about the installation of our new five-barrel pilot brewing system! With this new brewhouse, our brewers will be producing a whole slew of new specialty draft beers. The beauty of a small batch system is that it allows our brewers to “play” – just get creative and try new recipes. Since these are limited-quantity beers, they’ll only be available at Penn Brewery and a small handful of other bars and restaurants. We start brewing in March!
Here’s some Q&A about our new brewing system with Nick Rosich, our head brewer:
Q. What is the production capacity of the new system?
A. Depending on the style of beers and the sales numbers, approximately 150 bbls/yr is a good estimate.
Q. How frequently will we brew with the system?
A. Depending on the styles of beer, approximately 3 brews/month.
Q. What kinds of beer will be brewed? What special varieties can we look forward to?
A. Delicious ones! Out of the gates we are looking at a high ABV Scottish ale (wee heavy) and a few different takes on a session IPA to fine tune it pre-production.
Q. What are the benefits of brewing on a smaller system? Are there things you can make with the smaller system you can't on the large-scale system?
A. More creative and unique styles that may not sell at the rate, let's say, Penn Pilsner or Penn IPA does. 99.9% of the time the fresher the beer the better the beer. We can also fire it up for special restaurant events and make 5/2 kegs instead of 95/2 kegs.
Q. What else do you want to say about the system?
A. We're all really excited for some of the creative opportunities and outlets that a scratch system will open for us, such as allowing the brewing staff to produce new, different, and unique styles. There is a Pro-Am series of beers in planning with a few local Pittsburgh area home brewers and some collaborations with existing breweries we have been wanting to do for a while.----
The first brew from the system, a wee heavy Scottish ale, will be ready in April. (And if you sign up for the Penn Mug Club, you’ll get first crack at it!) We can’t wait!