Fire brewing. That’s right, beer that is brewed over an open flame rather than a steam jacket. Pretty impressive stuff, but surely it is just a gimmick?

Not according to Australia’s one and only traditional flame brewers at The Prancing Pony Brewery in SA. The team at the Pony compare steam and fire brewing something like this: “Just consider the difference in the taste of eating a perfect flame grilled steak or a similar steak steamed or boiled – the taste has no comparison!”

According to Frank Samson, the fire method imparts an array of complex caramel and toffee flavours into the beer.

Using a self-created beer system Samson explains that he has replicated the old method of brewing – no easy task and one he has been working on since 1982. In the old days, the skills of the brewer were not only based on selecting the malt blends and the hops but also on manipulating and understanding the heat source – which the brewer achieved by adding or removing fuel from the fire as required.

Now working alongside his mate Ken – who grows the barley on his Adelaide Hills farm – The Prancing Pony is set to launch their first commercial brew this Saturday, December 1. And with a Blonde and an Amber on offer – both unfiltered and bottle conditioned – the fire brewery is sure to be an interesting addition to the Australian brewing landscape.

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