PETE BROWN : MIRACLE BREW
Talking hops, barley, yeast and water, with accompanying samples of beer
We’ve been brewing and drinking beer for thousands of years, without understanding how or why the brewing process works. In the Middle Ages, yeast was called ‘godisgoode’ because no one had any idea what fermentation was. Malting barley, too, has for centuries seemed genuinely wondrous: it’s only in the last 200 years that science has identified and understood how man and yeast work together to gently (or not so gently) persuade this humble grain to give up its sugary stash for fermentation into beer.
From the birth of brewing (and civilisation) in the Middle East, through an exploration of water’s unmurky depths and the surreal madness of drink-sodden hop-blessings in the Czech Republic, to the stunning recreation of the first ever modern beer – Miracle Brew is an extraordinary journey through the nature and science of brewing.
Along the way, we’ll meet and drink with a cast of characters who reveal the magic of beer and celebrate the joy of drinking it. And, almost without noticing, we’ll learn the naked truth about the world’s greatest beverage.
Pete Brown is a British writer who specialises in making people thirsty. He is the author of eight books and wrote the annual Cask Report for its first nine years.
He writes numerous articles in the drinks trade press and consumer press. He appears regularly on TV and radio, and has judged competitions including the BBC Food and Farming Awards, the Great Taste Awards and the Great British Pub Awards.
He’s a member of the British Guild of Beer Writers, and was named Beer Writer of the Year in 2009, 2012 and 2016.