Interview: Robert Beck

What’s your background in brewing? Where did you learn the trade?
I first started my career in brewery in England in 2005. In 2008, I moved on to become head brewer for Neaustadt brewery in Canada. After a year brewing in the freezing cold and soaking up as much knowledge of North American brewing practices as I could, I headed for the southern hemisphere to  Australia, where  I brewed for Little Creatures and James Squire. Over the years, I brewed a large variety of different beer styles.

How have your brewing methods and tastes evolved since you first started?
The methods used for brewing beer depend on the country that I work in. Essentially, the science does not change. In terms of the tastes, I used to like flat and warm English Ale, and now, since I am in living in a much warmer country, I drink colder and darker beer.

What’s your favorite thing to drink?
My personal favourite is Irish beer because of the caramel and malty flavor.

What’s one surprising thing about brewing that most people wouldn’t suspect?
Brewing beer is actually more manual than what people think it is. It is not only about mixing different ingredients, the brewing process requires tremendous amount of time and effort, which usually involves hard manual labor.

What trends are you seeing on the local beer scene?
We certainly see an increasing consumer base trying out new beer styles and much more awareness of craft beers. We are also seeing a growth in discerning female drinkers who are gravitating towards craft beers.

What food would you pair with the new limited edition British India Pale Ale?
It is dependent on each person’s preference, but we suggest pairing the beer with game meat, such as venison, duck, or even kangaroo.

Robert Beck’s new beer for Archipelago Brewery, the British India Pale Ale will be available at Beerfest Asia 2013 on June 13-16 at Marina Promenade.