Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Member's Profile Cameron Part 2

HIX Beer

By Craig Ditcham

For my second ‘interview’ I thought we’d like to know more about the man behind those award winning beers from Hickinbothams.

Tell us about yourself:
I’m a forty year old virgin! Not really I’m actually soon to be a dad for the first time.
I’m originally from Sydney and moved down here 10‐ 11 years ago. Soon after joined the brew club, and the rest is history.

How did you get into brewing?

Travelling overseas opened my eyes to a world of beer I didn’t know existed. After a year of travelling I landed a job in London working in a bar as a live in. The pub (The Bull &Last) had 2 real ales on tap, London Pride, and Greene King IPA which sparked my THIRST for knowledge about these beers. I went to many CAMRA events tasting amazing real ale across the country side, including the big one in London which had literally hundreds of the freshest real ale you could imagine, even so fresh that some were still fermenting out of the breather bung. I started doing kit brews in the pub and tried them on some of the locals, they were recipes that had come out of a book which I
bought in America which was recommended to me by a guy on the Machu Pichu trail I was travelling with (The Joys of Homebrewing, by Charlie P.)

Please tell us how you ended up being the Hix brewer?

I heard that Hickinbotham’s were looking for a full time employee and that they were in the genesis stage of starting to brew their own, so I turned up with an esky full of homebrew to which they said when can you start.

What awards have your beers won?:

In 2011 the first AIBA (Australian, International Beer Awards) we had entered, we won gold in the Pale Ale alongside Feral Hop Hog, as well as silver in the Brown Ale. I can’t tell how exciting it was, we were just hoping for a little feedback from the judges score sheets. Since then we have received medals every year, with our Brown being the most

What do you (and the Hickinbotham’s) aim to achieve with your brewery?:

To make the best possible beers for the punters. We are always looking for ways to improve our beers whether it be technique or process, or ingredients.

Tell us about your setup at Hix:
It is unlike any other commercial brewery out there! All the components have had a second life. It’s a philosophy that the Hickinbotham’s have built their lives around. Even the brewer use to be a Motor Mechanic, then a commercial skylight supervisor!! The basics are that it’s a single infusion gravity system, the mash tun is a double walled dairy vessel, the kettle is a steam jacketed unit and the brew size varies between 1000L‐1200L, and the fermenters are 1100L stainless flat bottomed cubes.

I’ve read recently that you love your job – what is it exactly that you love about it?
That’s why we are here Yeah? I love the fact there are so many different elements to enjoy about beer brewing, there is an intimate relationship between the science, art.
Not only does your understanding of the process from go to whoa has to be solid, but also your senses, taste, smell, visual. It’s a very personal expression and when it comes

out right there is no better feeling, especially when friends and customers appreciate it.

If you were in a good beer store what 3 beers would you buy?

Tooheys Old, Tooheys New, Tui, Not really, Tsjeeses Reserva from Belgium – a 2002 10% quad that has been aged in a bourbon barrel, it was so well balanced it produced a WOW moment. Weltenburger Dunkle and any other great example of any style…

Do you have any philosophies in life that guide you or you live by?
Do things that make you happy!

Thx Cam








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