Hi, I’m the Fermentologist.
I’m not a professional. Well, not a professional brewer anyway. I spend my days in a biochemistry laboratory: lab coat, gloves, pocket protector, and lots of little tubes of science just aching to be involved in a groundbreaking discovery. Sadly, in scientific research, amazing discoveries are rare and disappointment is the norm.
Thankfully, not all experiments end in crushing defeat, especially when you can drink the results. The science of fermentation has led me to an excellent hobby/obsession where I can enjoy creating protocols to test theories and attempt to reproduce the results of other brewers.
Like many people, the poverty of post-secondary education inspired me to create, modify, and experiment with methods of saving money. My first foray into alcohol production involved a bunch of “borrowed” chemistry lab equipment, several bottles of Chinese cooking alcohol and a few brave friends. The plan was to distill these $5 bottles of salty alcohol and collect the good stuff while leaving the salt behind for french fries, where it belongs. Unfortunately it didn’t work very well but at least nobody suffered any lasting injuries.
From here I quickly graduated to inexpensive beer and wine kits from the grocery store. These were a staple for years until I realized that much better results could be obtained when ingredients didn’t come out of a can or bag of concentrated juice. The transition to malt extract brewing was an epiphany of flavour and beer styles and all-grain beer went even further. My tenure as a lifelong brewer was secured when I became a beekeeper producing buckets of honey for mead and a gardener growing hops and ancient brewing herbs.
The discoveries and recipes that I have made over the years are what I would like to share here. I hope you enjoy them!