Once Tried, Never Forgotten

As mentioned in my last post, thanks to a Christmas gift of a home-brewing kit, I have made a foray into a new and different outlet for my creativity.

Now, before you become concerned that this blog will turn into a platform for the discussion of such arcane terms as ‘mouthfeel’, ‘lacing’ and ‘wort’, fret not. This is merely a brief diversion and I shan’t be growing a beard and insisting all ale is served at room temperature.

The kit I received came with all the necessary ingredients to brew an India Pale Ale with a target ABV of 6.2%, which was branded as ‘Docker’s Merseyside IPA’.

Now, whilst I did follow the instructions to the letter, as it was my first time and I didn’t want to cock it up, as this was brewed in my own “brewery” (the corner of my dining room), I felt that I should be able to name both the “brewery” and the beer myself. And maybe get some labels printed up to stick on the bottles.

Because… well, why not?

Regular readers may recall that a certain Constable Rowan walked past a brewery on his way to work, so it seemed obvious that any beer I made would come from The Blackwell Brewing Co.

As for the name of the beer, it had to reflect both the type of beer and be significant to me. And this is how my mind works…

It’s an IPA, which stands for India Pale Ale and as I’d already decided it’s from The Blackwell Brewing Co., I’m in the Victorian mindset, so thinking the Raj. It’s 6.2% ABV, which is pretty strong… India, strong…elephants. Elephant beer already exists, so can’t do that. However, one of the most famous Victorian circus elephants was named Jumbo…which also happened to be my nickname when I was a baby, due to being quite big. Boom! Jumbo IPA it is…

“Once Tasted, Never Forgotten.”

And the proof is in the pouring…

Tune in next time, when will return to you regular scheduled programming…

11 thoughts on “Once Tried, Never Forgotten

    • Thanks Pete. It is a touch fierce on the first sip, so you can tell it’s a strong one, but it does have both the aroma and taste of grapefruit, so quite refreshing. More of a lazy afternoon in a sunny garden beer.


  1. Back when I used to indulge I was rather partial to an IPA myself, (Flowers IPA, being my one of choice).

    Like the labels and name, thank god you didn’t go for one of those joke names, like “Dumdo’s todger juice” or something! 😁

    I notice we didn’t actually see you tasting your brew…..🤔

    Anyway cheers mate, Roger (how terribly apt for a change!!) .🍻


    • As my son (who helped with the brewing and bottling process) was doing the video, as we were both trying it, he had to stop filming when we actually sampled it. In the response to Pete I’ve described my first impression. I am led to believe that it should mellow over the coming weeks, so hopefully won’t be such an assault on the senses next time.


  2. Nice color! Looks like you had fun! How much did your first batch yield, and how long did it take? The label came out great!
    Now I want to do something similar…but with a stout. My label will likely include something bagpipe-related…


    • Cheers Keith. Started off at 23 litres, and we ended up with 43 500ml bottles. Obviously, that was then – there’s about 35 now.

      Took roughly a month from starting to first tasting. About two weeks in the bucket, a further week bottled and in the warm, then cold conditioned for a further week. Really needed another week to calm down, as the first sampling was like it had grabbed your ears and was screaming in your face.

      As for the labels, they were from http://www.beerlabelizer.com. I chose one of their available designs, changed the text and colour, uploaded a picture and placed the order. They are sticky-backed vinyl labels, so easy to apply and waterproof. Plus the sites quite fun to mess about on, as you can add your text then cycle through the designs until you find one that suits.


    • Hi Keith. Been a bit fraught over yhe last month, as the contract I am on was shortened, meaning that the majority of my free time has been spent job-hunting. Although some beer was also drunk, because…well, why not?

      I need to get my hobby mojo rekindled, but with the prospect of no job, some things take priority.


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