Here at Wild Weather, we’re a tightly knit group. Our bar staff at The Weather Station are considered practically part of the family and in many respects, are the voice of the brewery for many of our drinkers. They know what’s up. They’re our troops on the ground, waxing lyrical about our latest specials and upcoming releases, all whilst churning out pint after pint of our core beers. We’ve been talking about Station Creations for a little while now, and we’re finally getting the ball rolling on this: an ongoing series of collaborations with our very own bar team. Queenie – you may take the stage.
Queenie, named affectionately after Lizzy, (our assistant manager at The Weather Station) is first and foremost a Gingerbread Stout brewed to a more sessionable strength than a lot of our previous dark offerings. Pints are the goal here, not two third measures. Queenie is cosy and warming, and subtly spiced with ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove in a 5:3:1:1 ratio – the very same magic blend that makes for perfect gingerbread. Layered onto the spice is a final touch of unmistakably sweet and aromatic Madagascan vanilla.
Without the spice blend, Queenie is actually a black treacle milk stout. The treacle was added to provide that caramelised sugar tone synonymous with sweet baked goods, and to provide a gently spiced platform for key players like ginger to build onto in the flavour profile. Both lactose and maltodextrin were added in moderation, with each unfermentable sugar playing a slightly different role. The lactose is needed to boost the sweetness in a ‘refined sugar’ kind of way, once again conjuring ‘baked goods’ in the mind. Maltodextrin on the other hand tastes more malty – a bit like horlicks in fact – and was added to Queenie to boost body on a lower strength beer, improve head retention for a silky pour into the glass, and to leave a quiet, doughy chewiness in the finish.
The brew day with Kane, Lizzy and Grace was a blast. Aside from making beer together and listening to The Beatles for most of the day, we also had a bit of fun with some gingerbread men for our social media. We’ve seen a lot of odd things going on at Wild Weather, but a gingerbread man on a string being lowered into boiling wort… to a chorus of the mission impossible theme, is a new one for us.
Queenie, as with all future Station Creations, will be exclusive to The Weather Station for the first week of its existence, before going onto general sale afterwards. If you want in on the launch, or to get cans ahead of your mates, you’ll have to make your way down! Kane prides himself on offering comparisons of our beers across formats, so this beer will launch concurrently in cask, keg and can. Why not buy a pint of cask and keg, and compare the two side by side? You’d be surprised at how the packaging format and serving style affects the flavour and mouthfeel of the beer in different ways – it’s a really interesting experience for the curious drinker.