MAKE IT Ginger Rye Ale

Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine - - Breakout Brewer: Aslan Brewing -

As­lan Brew­ing’s Ginger Rye Ale is based on an Amer­i­can pale ale and in­spired by the Moscow Moose cock­tail. The ginger and rye are present, but sub­tle. The wild card is the use of lime, which shines through on the fin­ish. This is an ad­ven­tur­ous beer and a sta­ple of the brew­ery.

ALL-GRAIN

Batch size: 5 gal­lons (19 liters) Brew­house ef­fi­ciency: 80% OG: 1.054 FG: 1.010 IBUS: 39 ABV: 5.5%

MALT/GRAIN BILL

10 lb (4.5 kg) pale ale 1.5 lb (680 g) rye malt 8 oz (227 g) Crys­tal 40 4 oz (113 g) Cara­pils

HOPS & AD­DI­TIONS SCHED­ULE

1.1 g cal­cium sul­fate in the mash 2.7 g cal­cium chlo­ride in the mash 1 oz (28 g) Chi­nook at 60 minutes 0.5 oz (14 g) Ci­tra at 15 minutes 4 oz (113 g) grated fresh ginger at

12 minutes 4 oz (113 g) honey at 5 minutes Zest and juice of 1 lime at whirlpool 1 oz (28 g) Ci­tra at dry hop 2 oz (57 g) grated fresh ginger at dry hop

YEAST Wyeast 1056 Amer­i­can Ale DI­REC­TIONS

Use 1.25 quarts (1.2 l) of wa­ter per pound (454 g) of malt. Mash at 150°F (66°C) for 60 minutes. Boil for 60 minutes fol­low­ing the hops and ad­di­tions sched­ule. Chill the wort, aer­ate, and pitch the yeast. Fer­ment at 68°F (20°C). mak­ing a fresh-hopped beer. I used only fresh hops for the whole process, so the bit­ter­ness was hard to pre­dict. It came out fruity, mild, com­plex, hoppy, amaz­ing. The re-cre­ation of that beer with­out fresh hops has been a three-year [pro­ject] that is still be­ing per­fected. But it’s about the jour­ney, not the des­ti­na­tion, right?”

Dawn Pa­trol’s bal­ance of malt and hops and its clean, crisp fin­ish make it a great match for many of the brew­ery’s kitchen of­fer­ings. Like its beers, As­lan’s food is com­pletely or­ganic and from a sourced col­lec­tive of Washington farm­ers. It in­cludes pou­tine, burg­ers, sev­eral rice and vegetable bowls, and chur­ros. Ev­ery item on the menu is thought­fully paired with one of As­lan’s beers.

“We be­lieve our brew­ery is the com­plete pack­age,” says Haynes. “We hope on some level to be lead­ers in the or­ganic move­ment.”

As­lan’s lion logo, in case you were won­der­ing, is not a ref­er­ence to the fa­mous C.S. Lewis chil­dren’s book, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. As­lan is a Turk­ish word that means lion. As­lan’s four own­ers—haynes, Tros­set, CEO Jack Lamb, and Tros­set’s brother and Di­rec­tor of Sales, Boe Tros­set—stum­bled across it when they were writ­ing the business plan.

“When we were de­cid­ing how to brand our­selves, we de­ter­mined that we wanted to have a mas­cot,” Haynes says. “We liked the idea of a lion—it’s a pow­er­ful, re­gal crea­ture. We wanted to es­tab­lish our­selves promi­nently in Washington’s beer and food scenes, be king of the jun­gle.”

Be­yond or­ganic in­gre­di­ents, As­lan’s tribe is deeply com­mit­ted to pro­tect­ing its jun­gle—well, re­ally, its for­est in the sur­round­ing Belling­ham area. “A lot of us moved here for the out­doors,” Haynes says. “Per­son­ally, I moved here to ski Mt. Baker. We’re just a bunch of out­door junkies. It was nat­u­ral for us to as­so­ciate the brand with the out­doors.”

As­lan be­came a Cer­ti­fied B Cor­po­ra­tion in 2016. (B Corps are for-profit com­pa­nies cer­ti­fied by the non­profit B Lab to meet rig­or­ous stan­dards of so­cial and en­vi­ron­men­tal per­for­mance, ac­count­abil­ity, and trans­parency.) Also, last year the brew­ery do­nated 15.5 per­cent of its prof­its to lo­cal non­prof­its and com­mu­nity or­ga­ni­za­tions, many of which sup­port en­vi­ron­men­tal causes. For ev­ery kwh of elec­tric­ity the brew­ery uses, a kwh of clean en­ergy will be pro­duced and put onto the grid through Ar­ca­dia Power. The brew­ery is a Down­town Im­prove­ment Gar­dens (DIGS, for short) stew­ard; it cap­tures wa­ter from the roof to wa­ter its out­door rain gar­dens, sun­flow­ers, hops, and rasp­ber­ries.

From core beers to core val­ues and down to ev­ery last de­tail, As­lan is very much an ex­pres­sion of its own­ers’ con­vic­tions. “We built this brew­ery with our bare hands,” says Haynes proudly. That was no small feat, ei­ther. The his­toric Mcbeath Build­ing that the brew­ery oc­cu­pies had to be ren­o­vated be­fore the brew­house was in­stalled—both to pre­serve its his­tory and re­duce con­struc­tion waste.

Haynes says peo­ple are of­ten sur­prised about his age. “I just turned 31,” he says. “Our ma­jor­ity owner is 27, our head brewer is 32, and our fourth part­ner is also 31. It seems our con­tin­ual drive, credit that to our ages or not, has turned heads with peo­ple. The busi­nesses and beer lovers in this com­mu­nity have been very wel­com­ing.”

Next for As­lan is a new bar­rel-ag­ing fa­cil­ity and tast­ing room that will open down the street from the brew­ery’s orig­i­nal lo­ca­tion on For­est Street later in 2017. “We be­lieve that at a cer­tain size, you start los­ing your soul,” Haynes says, ex­plain­ing that the “cer­tain size” is dif­fer­ent for ev­ery brew­ery. For As­lan, Haynes says he and the other co-own­ers are com­fort­able with growth as long as they can stay com­mit­ted to or­ganic in­gre­di­ents and stay fo­cused on their com­mu­nity. “We are big be­liev­ers that to­gether we’ll con­tinue to help cul­ti­vate Belling­ham’s amaz­ing beer scene.”

Left » The As­lan brew­house uses clean en­ergy, and the roof is de­signed to cap­ture rain­wa­ter for the out­door rain gar­dens fea­tur­ing hops, sun­flow­ers, and rasp­ber­ries.

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