The Real Fantastic Four
Maisel & Friends wants to do craft beer on our own terms. For us, that means pushing the limits of what the German Reinheitsgebot can do. Some people scoff at our old school loyalty to the Reinheitsgebot. We see it as a radically different way to do something new.
How is it that beer is 90% water, but no one ever thinks about it? Well, at least very few drinkers think about it, but we know most brewers of the world do! Water quality and composition are the lifeblood of a good beer, and if you’ve ever talked to a brewer, you’ll know how hard it is to get right. It’s a labor of love that is way too unsexy for marketing, but key to good beer.
Crystal Clear Mountain Water
We said that most brewers worry about their water quality. Most of them. The first of the Maisel family was either darn smart or darn lucky, because our brewery landed smack dab on what many call the “Heart Spring of Europe”. We’ve got over 10,000 pure unadulterated water sources lapping their way through our semi-mountainous landscape of the Fichtel Mountains.
A treasure trove of water so soft our brewery doesn’t need to do anything but splash it in the kettle. While others labor, we get to sit back and enjoy what nature already gave us.
If water is the lifeblood, then hops are what give beer its attitude, lending both its bitter bite and its fruity flair.
Hops from the Hallertau and Franconia
We source all our local hops from the Spalt and Hersbruck regions of Franconia and the Hallertau region of Bavaria, which is the largest single hop growing region in the world!
Hops from Australia and the USA
Where you get your hops matters. Every hop growing region has its own climate, soil, and growing methods, and these things leave their mark. Can seem hard to believe, but it’s true. To push the envelope of beer while sticking to the Reinheitsgebot, we are willing to search far and wide for crazy hops you can’t get anywhere else. We’ve found some, too. We had to cast our net a bit wider than just our local region, but the USA and Australia came through.
Markus Eckert of Herpersdorf
If you want to be in the beer business, you’re going to need a good hop guy. Ours is Markus Eckert from Herpersdorf. He hooks us up with everything, from the very best of the traditional hop harvest, to small batches of experimental hops. Our newest project with Markus has been to build up a hop garden full of your not-so-average hop varieties. Now we’ve got Hallertauer Blanc, Citra, and Mandarina Bavaria, and we are ready to brew!
We’ve covered the lifeblood and attitude, so now we’re on to the beer’s backbone. Malt is there to make sure the beer stands upright.
The world of endless possibilities
For those of you who have never seen malt made, we’ll be the first to tell you that it is kind of a weird process. You take grain, let it germinate (i.e. start to sprout), then you dry it out and are ready to brew.
Well, you could be ready to brew, but there are just so many other things you can do with malt, too. You can smoke it, roast it, or caramelize it. You can make it darker, lighter, or somewhere in between. You can even take different kinds of grain, from barley to wheat to spelt or oats. We don’t need to be mathematicians to tell you that the possibilities for combinations are almost endless.
As the saying goes (that we just invented), no yeast, no party. Yeast is the ingredient that makes beer fun. Without it, you’ve just got sugary, syrupy water. But toss in some yeast, and let the fermentation begin!
The Secret Ingredient
Yeast is the one ingredient that truly makes a brewer’s beer unique, and so he guards it like a dog with his bone. We brew almost exclusively with yeasts of our own creation and are ready to defend them with our lives. If we want to try something new, we may appeal to the better sensibilities of some of our beer friends to get some of their yeast, though.