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Brewer Q&A: Evin ORiordain

Ben McFarland meets Evin O’Riordain of The Kernel Brewery in London.

Age?  35

Birthplace? New York State

How did you become a brewer? Always still becoming a brewer. Not sure if I’m quite there yet.

When did you have your beer epiphany? 2007, April, DBA’s beer garden, Lower East Side, Manhattan.

Who has been your brewing inspiration? Todd Trethowan. Cheesemaker extraordinaire.

What was the first beer you brewed and what was it like?  Cascade Pale Ale, not too shabby.

What would you be doing if you weren’t a brewer? I don’t have the imagination to answer that question.

If you could have a beer from another brewer, what would it be? Military Intelligence from Saints and Sinners at the Brew Wharf.

What’s your top hop? Today it’s Simcoe; yesterday the aroma of Nelson Sauvin blew my mind.

Favourite kernel beer? Today it’s something pale with Simcoe and Citra. But always Export Stout when the weather’s really hot.

What’s the secret to good brewing? That there is no secret. Brewing is a very open fraternity.

What is British brewing doing wrong? There is too much emphasis on processes used in brewing, and on methods of dispense, than on the quality of beer produced. There needs to be better beer.

Favourite beer and food match? Yesterday I had an Export Stout and vanilla ice cream affogato. Excellent. But the world is too full of wonder to limit yourself to ‘favourites’.

Which country is making the best beer in the world at the moment? The US.

Advice for any home-brewers out there? Experiment.

How much money have you got on you? Zero

What’s the hardest style of beer that you brew? Porters and Stouts make the most mess, so the cleaning up is physically more demanding.

Who would win a fight between a lion and two cobras? What?

What’s your idea of happiness? Not to be asked questions like this.

Minstrels or Revels? No comprendo.

Whisky or Gin? Whisky.

Favourite wine? Everything recommended by

What was the last CD you bought? Volcano the Bear – 500 Boy Piano.

What was the last decent film you watched? Bela Tarr’s Satantango.

Can you tell us a joke? Keep it clean, mind. No jokes, I’m too serious.

If you could have a beer with anyone from history who would it be and which beer would you choose? Leopold Bloom, and a bottle of Stuart Howe’s ‘Heston’ Offal Ale.

Ben McFarland, 27.09.2010

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