“Stay with the beer. Beer is continuous blood. A continuous lover.” – Charles Bukowski
Your love for beer need not be restricted to bars. Take it to the next level and study the art of beer making. Aarushi Agrawal provides the down low on acceptable alcoholism – a career in beer
The youth have a long standing history with beer. For some, it is an initiation into the world of alcohol. While for many others, it is the only drink that fuels their system. Beer is that one drink that can be enjoyed in any situation, with anyone and at any given time of day. So what makes this drink so very special? Its types and ingredients, of course! There are four basic ingredients in beer – water, malt, hops and yeast. And they are categorised into two broad types – ales and lagers.
Careers in beer
In of other words, a beer maker. A brew master oversees the brewing of beer in a brewery. He is responsible fro everything from picking out raw materials, coming up with recipes, overlooking the fermentation process, management of staff, ensuring the packing and storing is done optimally, and in some cases, even taking care of a brewery’s finances.
PROFESSIONAL BEER TASTER
A professional beer taster is one who identifies ingredients, recognises textures and understands the entire brewing process. Predicting the reception of the beer by consumers requires exceptional sensory skills with respect to aroma, flavour and aftertastes. Most importantly, a professional beer taster must not let personal preferences get the way.
Cicerones are awarded this title only after passing the Cicerone Certifications Programme that assesses individuals who claim to know everything there is to beer. The Craft Beer Institute has trademarked the word cicerone, so not everyone can call themselves one. For the layman, a beer cicerone is, let’s say, a beer doctor.
A home brewery or microbrewery is a small-scale brewing enterprise normally produced only for self-consumption usually by amateurs, but definite enthusiasts. Craft beers, a brand part of home breweries, are produced by small, independent and traditional breweries. These are usually owned by families and passed down, with new and rustic innovations along the way.
Perks and challenges
Free beer is definitely the biggest perk of picking a career in beer. Beyond the obvious, the fact that one gets to work on and create new beers that may be enjoyed by people is an extremely fulfilling experience. A career in beer also allows one to explore and taste different beers and meet people wit a mutual love for beer. Since there’s no set educational requirement, you can literally start at any time in your life. Along with the perks, there are also a few challenges. For starters, raw materials aren’t available easily, especially since suppliers don’t want to sell in small quantities. The equipment used in brewing is also not very sophisticated. And in a country like India, dealing with the government to acquire alcohol licences is quite a hassle.
future of the beer industry
Brewing is new to India, but with a sizeable market it shows promise as a career avenue. There are a number of breweries that work exceptionally well because of the taste and elegance of freshly brewed beer. Here people who love beer also experiment with it. Rockman’s Beer Island, The Barking Deer and Gateway Brewing Co are breweries in India that a beer lover must visit.
“In India, [one may earn] anything between Rs. 20,000 and Rs. 3,00,000 per month, depending on size of the brewery, your qualification, work experience and your position,” says Oliver Schauf, Brew Master at BrewCrafts Microbrewing Pvt. Ltd.
how to start your education
In spite of there being on established schools for an education in beer in India, self-education and a passion for your work will get you far. “I went to UK, Belgium and Singapore in pursuit of craft beer. I was eager to taste new beers, to learn abut the history and eventually, how it is made,” say Navin Mittal, co-founder of the Gateway Brewing Co. Most beer professionals in India, though, are self-made, and here’s how you can get started on that:
* Drink. Go out and get two beers of different companies and sip them side by side, trying to notice a difference in flavour, colour, clarity, aroma, feel in mouth (carbonated, thin, flat) and the alcohol level.
* Read. There are a variety of books on brewing, tasting, everything imaginable. Follow blogs. Read articles. The knowledge offered is immense.
* Work. Try to get any odd job at a brewery. Shadow a master brewer, or get in touch with beer related professionals. Just be around beer as much as possible.
“Ah, beer. The cause of, and the solution to, all of life’s problems.” – Homer Simpson
Beer tasting for dummies
* Certain foods work to enhance or subdue beer taste. However, beginners must drink beer without the usual bits of food.
* Wine tasters don’t swallow. Beer tasters do. The entire experience is rated, not just the taste.
* Ideal time for tasting is afternoons when your mouth palette is relatively fresh and you’re not too tired.
Volume 4 Issue 4