In September 2017 we had a very special visitor. Jamil Zainasheff, the co-author of Brewing Classic Styles and Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation, who is also the owner/brewer of Heretic Brewing Company in California, flew into Cork.

After a night in that city – including a stout tasting! – with our Kiwi, who showed off his in-depth knowledge of the best backstreet pubs and dives Cork had to offer, Jamil came up to Mitchelstown to brew a beer with us.

We had recently emptied five barrels and decided to put them to use in his honour. The plan was to brew a strong dark farmhouse ale, a nod to country porter of the past. We also had a real glut of blackberries to hand so, after some preliminary work / chat at the brewery, we headed off to do a little foraging.

Jamil was a good sport on what was a fairly wet, miserable day. Derek kept him entertained with Irish folklore concerning blackberries and the devil, just to add a nice Heretical layer to the foraging, and we all competed to see who could avoid falling into the river – but still get the most amount of bramble scratches – during the berry picking.

 

After we let that beer sit for 14 months in Burgundy pinot noir and chardonnay barrels on a feast of blackberries, the lads came up with a suitably Heretic-al name for it: Trespass.

We thought it was very fitting, given that the sweetest blackberries always grow on another man’s bush.

Read more: Trespass Dark Farmhouse Ale with blackberries

 

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