Forge Brew Works Opened Over the Weekend; Expect Belgian Styles and the Ubiquitous Galaxy Hop-IPA
Posted by Eliana Reyes / Monday, October 21st, 2013
Former engineer Matt Rose first started brewing six years ago. “A friend of mine bought me a Mr. Beer Brew kit for Christmas,” he says. “I kind of looked at it and I looked at the ingredients and I said, ‘We can do better than this.’”
This past Saturday, after the typical months-long wait for clearing inspections, Rose’s Forge Brew Works opened in Lorton.
Inspired by that first beer kit, Rose began gathering ingredients and brewing at least twice a month for five years determined to create his own better beer. “I started really getting into it, started bugging my friends in the industry, started bothering other brewers that I knew, and then around June of last year, I sat down with my wife and we decided that we should try to open a brewery.” In March, they set up a Kickstarter with a promise to release an e-book of all six Forge beer recipes if they received $17,000 and to shave Rose’s beard at $25,000. The e-book is being put together, while Rose’s beard remains.
“All the beers I’m using, they’re old and traditional,” says Rose, who has no problem sharing his recipes. “I’m doing modern takes on old recipes.” His Roggenbier replaces the traditional Hefeweizen’s wheat with rye. The Petite Saison uses Belgian and Czech hops to complement the Saison’s floral yeasts. For the fall season, Rose plans on releasing an old-world ale seasonal that uses raspberries, dark malt and treacle along with a beer called the “Kelsenator,” named after his pet poodle.
For non-alcoholic drinkers or the gluten-free, Forge Brew will also offer a ginger ale made using a similar process as the beer and a root beer/sarsaparilla is in the works. Rose is also trying to bring in a cider from an outside vendor.
But drinks aren’t the only thing Rose made at his brewery. “A lot of our equipment we either assembled or built by hand,” he says. With the assistance of his wife Kerri, who is also an engineer, they created their own hopper grist mill. The couple assembled the current pilot system while waiting for the rest of their brewing system, which is anticipated to be a 10-barrel system. The giant walk-in coolers? Also assembled by the Roses, who even had to saw the metal sides down to size constraints.
Tags: beer, brew, brewery, Eliana Reyes, Gut Check, Hefeweizen, Hops, Kerri Rose, Kickstarter, Lorton, mag, Magazine, Matt Rose, Northern Virginia, Northern Virginia Magazine, NoVA, roggenbier, rosé, Saison