Dad's special brew wets more than baby's head

WILMA MCCORKINDALE
Last updated 05:00 03/09/2014

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Dale Booth brewed a raspberry beer for his baby girl. Now he's in the pink over a commercial contract.

The beer was brewed by the Dunedin accountant and veteran home brewer in 2012 in anticipation of the arrival of baby daughter Evie, who's now 2.

It then achieved the favour of judges and came out tops at last year's inaugural Otago University Students' Association (OUSA) brewing contest.

Now it's to be bottled by eminent Dunedin craft brewery Emerson's, and the brewing process started on Friday.

Booth is no stranger to brewing, an active relaxer for him since his varsity days. A veteran brewer of wheat beers, he reckoned a special brew would be a great way to wet the baby's head.

"I just began trying different things out, six months before Evie was born," Booth said.

"I'd already made a few wheat beers. This time I wanted to do something pink in colour, so I put 2 kilograms of frozen raspberries into the fermenter.

"It came up this beautiful pinky red colour by the time I got it in the bottle. Then I tasted it and thought, ooh, this doesn't taste too bad! It had a nice raspberry hit, a great summer beer."

A bottle or 10 later, the beer was proving so popular with mates that Booth ended up making three batches, and entered the last one into the OUSA brewing contest.

And what was his secret for the winning beer?

The right ingredients, a bit of passion, coupled with good luck and putting your own twist on the brew.

Emerson's general manager Richard Emerson said the brewery had previously produced a raspberry beer but did not have one in the current range.

It would be an easy one to make and the final result should be very flavoursome, he said.

The process would take a few days. One of the last processes before bottling would be putting the raspberries in the fermenter.

OUSA spokesman Alasdair Johnston said Evie would be exclusively sold at this year's Craft Beer and Food Festival timed for October, which was heavily supported by Emerson's.

Booth's home brew success this year followed on from a hit beer produced through a collaboration between Emerson's and Whittaker's Chocolate last year, he said.

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