Following the successful launch of our flagship pale ale, Moonshine, in 440ml cans last month, we’re proud to announce that Absolution is joining the ranks!
Absolution holds a special place in Abbeydale Brewery history, as it’s our longest standing beer, and the first beer we ever brewed back in 1996. It’s a deceptively easy-drinking, premium strength golden ale (5.3%), featuring a carefully selected blend of hops from around the globe. The hops have changed slightly over the years – as they are a natural product which vary from harvest to harvest, having flexibility over the hops that are added to the beer can actually provide a greater level of consistency of flavour rather than keeping the recipe exactly the same. The current Absolution recipe contains Willamette, Bobek, Cascade, Pacific Gem and Tradition hops, to create a fruity and well-balanced beer, with a subtle sweetness and a long-lasting finish.
For this special brew of Absolution for can, we needed a 60 BBL (100HL) batch to fill the almost 20,000 cans we have ready. We mashed in the first batch at 5am and the second at 9am, filling one of our massive tanks by 5 o’clock. Not a bad day’s work, we have to say!
Double brewdays are not a rare occurrence for us here at Abbeydale Brewery, although they’ve been less frequent during lockdown of course. However, usually, the batches brewed on the same day would be different beers, or would go into separate tanks. So for Moonshine for example, which in usual times we brew in 30 BBL batches (the largest our mashtun can handle) at least five times per week, the second batch of day 1 is blended with the first brew of day 2 in one of our large 60 BBL fermentation vessels. Brewing this way gives the yeast a head start munching away on the first batch added to tank, meaning it has already reached krausen (the first signs of fermentation are visible, in the form of a nice billowy, foamy head) by the time batch two gets blended in. Fermentation times are therefore reduced, and we can get the beers rolling through the system nice and quickly. This method of brewing is known as drauflassen.
As with our Moonshine cans, the recipe for Absolution is exactly the same for can as for cask, with just a few tweaks to the process to make it reach you just as we intend. (You can read more about these processes, and our decision to move to cans rather than bottles, here).
Lockdown has been the perfect time for us to get to grips fully with this project as our cask production has slowed down immensely, leaving us a little space to up our can production, and we hope to have the rest of our core range (Deception, Daily Bread and Black Mass) in can over the next few months too. We can’t promise they’ll all be permanently available in can, as cask will remain the primary format for these beers – and we very much hope that in the coming months we will be able to support and supply our loyal pub customers again (they’re the reason we’ve got to this stage, after all!), and that you can all have the opportunity to safely sup a hand pulled pint! However, we hope we’ve achieved our aim of keeping some familiarity for us all in these challenging times, and please be assured that we will continue to strive to offer as many of our beers in as many delicious ways as we possibly can.
You can pick up 6-packs or cases of 24x440ml cans of Absolution, along with all of our other currently available beers, on our online shop. Trade customers can call us on 0114 2812712 or email [email protected] to place any orders with us direct.