Tuesday, March 22, 2016

1001 Nights: Ayad Asha of the Brooklyn Brewery

http://wfmu.org/flashplayer.php?version=1&show=64304&archive=136409 Interview with Ayad Asha of the Brooklyn Brewery 

http://mofohockey.org/podcastgen/download.php?filename=2016-02-02_bh188.mp3 Non-Flash version of the podcast

Iraqi-born Ayad Asha came to New York in 2013, leaving behind Baghdad's "car bombs, militias fighting, and dead bodies in the street." He spoke no English when he arrived. After a time working in computer networking and IT, he landed a job on the packaging line at the Brooklyn Brewery. And after two years spent working hard and learning much, as well as earning the friendship and respect of his brewery co-workers, he was given the opportunity to brew a beer of his own creation, as part of the Worshipful Company of Brewers program. Thus was born 1001 Nights

B.R., Ayad, and Bob.
The beer, named for the famed collection of Arabic and Persian stories from the Islamic Golden Age, is a 5.7% ABV Saison style beer, enhanced by some Middle Eastern influences. Alluring Cardamom evokes a camphorous aroma and flavor, transporting one back into to enchanted stories of Sinbad, genies, and the like. Dark dried lemon contributes a sultry, smoky, citrus tinged quality, made all the more tantalizing by the use of raw honey in the brew. These three unique additions make this beer soar like a flying carpet, perfectly complimenting the ale's backbone of 2-row American malt, Perle and Styrian Golding hops, and Brooklyn's Belgian house yeast.

Ayad and Cellarman Eric Brown.
Ayad said that he drew inspiration for the recipe from cooking, notably the use of Cardamom with rice, and the dried lemon from making tea. He thought that the spice and citrus could work well in a wheat beer. Brooklyn Head Brewer Al Duvall agreed, as he praised Ayad's creation, saying that he had never experienced Cardamom in a beer like this before.

Ayad surrounded by Iraqi friends. 

Master Brewer Garrett Oliver heaped praise on to Ayad for not only his matchless work ethic and loyal character, but his creative, inspired recipe, which led to this unique, delicious, Most Worshipful worthy brew. This beer is in limited supply, served only at the Brewery tasting room (we believe), and you'll want to get to the brewery before it's gone. Because unlike the genie in the story of The Fisherman and the Jinni, once the beer is out of the keg, there will be no three wishes to make more of it!

Bob, beer colleague Seth, and B.R.

1001 Pints.
Ayad, brewery co-founder Steve Hindy, and an old friend from Iraq.

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