Week 3 of The Prud'homme Beer Certification had us discussing the proper storage and handling of draught beer. A lot of work goes into making sure someone gets the perfect pint. There's a plethora of different lines and do-hickeys that can be used to regulate the temperature and pressure of a draught system – in a bar with multiple draught lines it can look like a game of cat's cradle if they're not properly organized.
Aside from the proper setup and overall cleanliness, you then need to figure out how to properly pour a beer (this does not involve scooping out foam with a plastic spoon) and serve it in the appropriate beer glass. Many beer glasses are designed specifically for a specific style. One of my favorite being wheat beer, which was the focus of Week 3's tasting.
Tasting as a group is definitely one of the highlights of this program for me. It's great to share in the learning experience with other beer lovers. I got the chance to chat with a few of my fellow classmates about why they chose to sign up for Level 1, what they were surprised to learn from the session, what their favorite beer tasting was, and learned their favorite beer.
Amanda Barriage – Barley's Angel and aspiring home brewer
I've started brewing on my own at home and can't get enough knowledge of beer. I currently read books on brewing and ingredients and found the section on the draft system the most interesting. My favorite beer tasting was Sofie from Goose Island Co. a saison farmhouse ale. One of my favorite beers to drink at home is most of the beer from Unibroue, which brews Belgian style beer.
Scott Paterson – Student and beer lover
I mainly took this certification because I love beer and wanted to expand my knowledge of beer as well as to get back into home brewing. I enjoyed the section on draft systems and how they operate and my favorite beer tasting in class was the Kostritzer Schwarzbier. At home my go-to beer is Steamwhistle Pilsner and I enjoy Trappist beers.
Kensie Mailloux – Student and beer lover
I'm a home brewer so I wanted to learn more about beer and I'm also a waitress and want to be able to properly describe beers to customers when serving beer. Overall I found learning the terminology most interesting as it will help me when describing beer. It was also great to have a few tastings before our final exam! My favorite beer that we've tasted is the Liberty Ale by Anchor Brewing. One of the best beers I've had is HopWired IPA from 8 Wired which had a nice piney flavour.
I wanted to learn about the semantics of beer and brewing, as its important for someone working in the beer industry. The most interesting for me was learning how the taste of the alcohol can be hidden within a beer. My favorite tasting in the sessions was Sofie from Goose Island Co. and my favorite beer is Dogfish Head's Midas Touch.
Pasi Nuutilainen – Beer geek
Knowledge and general interest of beer is what made me sign up for the program. I have a fairly good knowledge of beer and would like to increase my knowledge. I enjoyed learning how to describe a beer in a more in depth manner when tasting and the ability to interact and share with other students while tasting. My favorite tasting in the sessions was Sofie from Goose Island Co. and one of my favorite beers is Enbars.
Stay tuned for next weeks post which will re-cap the 4th and final session, where we pair beer with food as well as an interview with Jeff O'Reilly, our knowledgeable instructor.