Steam Beer: Seattle Brewery Walking Tours with Jim Fristoe of Anchor Brewing

Steam Beer: Seattle Brewery Walking Tours with Jim Fristoe of Anchor Brewing


(Steps) Gulp (Boing!) Burp! (Mark Sparks) Of course as you explore the many
different styles of beer available you’ll also discover that some just
don’t seem to quite fit in. That’s because for one reason or another
they’re the exceptions to the rule. Let’s take a look at a couple of these right now. There’s one uniquely North American style that’s
been around for barely a century, Steam Beer. It started in San Francisco during the gold rush. With a taste for lager just coming into style and no reliable refrigeration, a resourceful pioneer brewery used a
bottom yeast fermented at top yeast temperature. Miraculously, the result was a dry lager
with some of the flavor of a pale ale. (Jim Fristoe, Anchor Brewing Company)
Ironically these first Brewers only had the lager yeast and to make
lager in those days before refrigeration ice and snow had to be harvested in the
winter time and they would pack this snow and ice around the vessels in order
to make the wort cool enough to add the yeast. Well nobody was going to go
harvest snow and ice in San Francisco and there was gold and other things to be found. So these first Brewers having only the
lager yeast to work with, had to find a way of cooling the wort
with no snow and ice. So rather than using deep vessels
they used shallow, broad, long pans. And the fog rolls into San Francisco every afternoon, and the temperature at nighttime
is very stable between 58 and 63 degrees. And they found that if they were able to get the wort down to about 60 degrees Fahrenheit that the lager yeast would function. And, albeit, a little bit faster than normal
they got there more often than not. So it’s really a necessity is the mother of invention
and that’s how steam beer came to be. (Mark Sparks) The only surviving version of this style
is anchor brewing of San Francisco

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