Hoosier Beer Geek worked with Metromix to create their 2010 Local Brewing Guide. It was published in the November 18th issue and we are going to republish the interviews we conducted over the next couple of weeks. Enjoy!
Broad Ripple Brewpub, est. 1990
842 E. 65th St., Indianapolis
When Kevin Matalucci took over as head brewer at the Broad Ripple Brewpub, he had never brewed a beer in his life. He received a five day crash course from departing brewer Ted Miller (now owner and brewer of Brugge Brasserie) and then it was his brewing system to operate. “I have to credit [former Brewpub brewer and current Lafayette Brewing Company owner] Greg Emig,” says Matalucci. “He let me call him once a week with questions.”
It didn’t take long for the Brewpub and Matalucci to create a loyal following of regulars. “For the longest time, we couldn’t keep up with the beer that we were selling over the bar.” But adding more brewing equipment allowed them to keep up with demand. And over the period of a year, Matalucci will brew over 35 different beer styles.
There are six beers on draft at any given time at the Brewpub, and you will find varying styles of ales and lagers. But since it is an English pub, it is not surprising that the house beers are English in style. “The ESB, the IPA, and Porter would be the defining beers of English-style,” Matalucci said. For a more authentic pint of English beer, it is suggested that you try a cask beer.
Draft beer is pressurized, using a light carbon dioxide infusion to force the beer out of a keg or serving tank and through the beer tap. In contrast, a cask beer is served without additional gas pressurization. The Brewpub serves cask beer through two handpulls (also referred to handpumps or a “beer engine”). The handpull uses an airtight piston chamber to mechanically pull the beer from the serving tank through a “sparkler” (which creates a spray, like the end of a garden hose) and into the glass.
“On the handpulls, the sparklers release the aromatics. It gives [the beer] a creaminess from the agitation. We put on some of the dry hopped beers, porters, stouts. Regulars that come in here learn to appreciate [handpulled beers]. I absolutely love the handpulls.”
Regular Beers (styles in parenthesis): ESB (British Extra Special Bitter), IPA (India Pale Ale), Porter, Stout
Seasonals: Over two dozen season and specialty beers each year including Oktoberfest, Pumpkin, Nut Brown, Wee Heavy, Ankle Biter (barleywine), Light Lager, Kolsch, Pilsner, Hefeweizen, Belgian Wheat, a variety of bocks