Free Range Haggis

Studying, Eating, and Drinking in Scotland


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I’m going, going, back, back to Caley, Caley.

Couldn’t resist the Notorious reference there. It’s been too long since FRH has had an update! So much has been going on lately, I’ve been buried with end of term assignments, “field trips,” and I’ve always gotta eat.

First up: The Caledonian Brewery

The Caley Brewery as it’s affectionately known around here was first established in 1869. The victorian-era brewing kit is still inside. Large 70 barrel direct-fired copper brew kettles equipped with internal calandrias. Very cool.

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We stopped by the brewery after class, partly to listen to a presentation from Heineken on Total Product Management but mostly because of the open bar and tell of free meat pies. The tour ended up being my favorite part of the whole evening. Open square fermenters, whole leaf hops, old school cask operations. It was great.

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Here’s an open top fermenter. You can see the krausen line where the yeast climbed the walls during the height of fermentation. The darker parallel lines show where the glycol chilling tubes run through the fermenter.

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The Caledonian uses whole leaf hops in their operation. Here’s Archie and Theo rubbing some Super Styrian hops. They smelled exactly like watermelon jolly ranchers. So sticky… they turned my hands bright green. After the tour we headed over to The Diggers. A proper old man’s drinking pub. They have a “Summer Whisky Festival” that runs all year round, 35 whiskies that go for 2.50 GBP for 35 mL. Pretty good deal…