Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Arcadia To Showcase American Ale At International Festival

Written by  Paul Starr
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marris otter beerfeest 2 

It’s not often that a grain makes history. However, with the help of Michigan’s Arcadia Ales, Maris Otter barley will be at the centre of an international celebration taking place next year.
The Maris Otter 50 Beer Festival in September 2015 will mark the extraordinary success of this malting barley - revered among ale brewers as the Rolls Royce of brewing malts. The Festival, the first ever to focus on a particular malt, will feature 50 new cask ales from across the country and the world.

“There is only one brewer representing America with an ale for the Festival and we’re honoured to have been invited to provide the nation’s contribution to the event,” says Tim Suprise from Arcadia Ales.

“The only stipulations are that it’s a new ale and – obviously – that it uses Maris Otter malted barley. Given that this is the only variety to have been in continual production for so long, it’s definitely worth celebrating. 50 years gives a golden excuse to talk about ingredients, craftsmanship, flavour – and all that is good about traditional British brewing.

“We’re going to create a truly special ale as a tribute to this phenomenal barley variety.” Grain varieties are short-lived. They are generally superseded every 3 or 4 years, and they rarely survive beyond 6 or 7 years. Maris Otter is different. From 1965, when it was first grown, it captured the support of ale brewers. It went through a challenging patch, and was brought back from the brink by grain merchants H Banham and another enterprising partner. It has since gone from strength to strength, and in September next year, it will have been in continual production for half a century.

“We’ve been using Maris Otter malt for many years so I can vouch for its consistent performance in the brewing process. Most importantly, I can vouch for the fact that, when treated right, it produces top quality ales with great depth of flavour and character. Our popular ales Hopmouth Double IPA and Loch Down Scotch Ale are testament to that.”

The Maris Otter 50 Beer Festival takes place 17 – 19 September 2015 in Norfolk, the main growing region for the variety. It is being staged by H Banham Limited with the help of David Holliday from the Norfolk Brewhouse. H Banham director Mark Banham says, “It’s terrific news that Arcadia Ales has agreed to produce one of the 50 unique cask beers for the Festival. It’s going to be a fantastic event, the first festival with all the beers produced from the same variety of malt.

Some of the country’s foremost beer tasters and writers will be there – and even 11 months before it’s due to happen there’s already a buzz about it in the beer world. We are looking forward to welcoming people from all over the world at the festival – who will be able to enjoy a new pint from Arcadia Ales.”

Ticket and information:www.marisotter50.co.uk

Paul Starr

Paul Starr

Paul Starr is the creator of the I'm a Beer Hound and one of the organizer and the driving force behind Art & Craft Beerfest, Lansing Beer Fest, Beerfest at the Ballpark Spring & Fall. When he's not working on Beer Hound he's probably watching the Lions, Tigers or Red Wings. Being a recent new Dad of twins, he doesn't have much extra time these days for mischief.