Posted by kluster on July 14, 2009
Sydney trio, The Brothers Inc, have been brewing Skinny Blonde since 2006 or so. What started at Potters Brewery, Hunter Valley - at a rate of ten kegs at a time - has grown into a 12 000-case-per-run company. Along the way there have been some explosions, some blind faith (on the part of Beach Road, Bondi, for providing a tap before there was any real company to speak of) and some nudity. It’s certainly a change from hitting the skins for The Vines, but drummer Hamish Rosser (one part of TBI) is no stranger to beer brewing; it’s in his blood. Kluster’s Editor-In-Chief, Kat Hartmann, met with Rosser at The Cricketers in Surry Hills to chat about the Japanese-inspired ale over a schooner of, you guessed it, Skinny Blonde.
Kat Hartmann: So, chemical engineer? This is a side of you I was not aware of. Tell me a little more…
Hamish Rosser: I finished high school and, in my family, it wasn’t, “Are you going to go to university?” it was, “Which course do you think you’ll do when you go to university?” I didn’t really know what wanted to do. I was accepted into electrical engineering initially. Then I switched to chemical [engineering] because I liked chemistry; it was probably my best subject. I got two years into the four-year course and I kind of hated it. Third year sucked but I had a lot of good eggheads around that really liked to lend me their assignments – people I leant on quite heavily – and I got through in four years.
KH: Did you do any work in that field after uni or was that, as they say, that?
HR: I had one job, working for CSR. Not making sugar but making bricks and tiles. Fascinating [laughs].
KH: Brewing beer is by no means a new pursuit for you. Can you tell me a little about your personal history with the creation of ale?
HR: When I was an engineering student I started brewing beer. I thought it would be cheaper than buying beer, which is why a lot of people get into it, but if you try to make it cheap it comes out rubbish. I was always enthusiastic and always wondered why my beers didn’t taste as good as the ones you go buy in the shop. I let it go for a while and then about four or five years ago we [The Brothers Inc] started getting back into it again. We were getting much better results, just by buying a lot of raw ingredients: grain, hops and wheat and making it from scratch. We were able to make some good ones from home. More...