The story of craft brewing in Columbus cannot be told without mentioning Barley’s Brewing Company. Founded in 1992, Barley’s was quenching this city’s craft beer thirst before most of today’s brewers could drink. That’s 26 years of brewing history, and the house yeast has been in use for 24 of them. It’s a Fuller’s Ale yeast lovingly harvested from the tailings of each batch of beer, and pitched into the next batch. Exceptions are made for certain styles, of course, but the house yeast is used in most of the beers.
Brewmaster Angelo Signorino is meticulous about keeping things clean, which ensures that the yeast doesn’t pick up any off-putting qualities along the way. Fermenters are cleansed with sanitizer, acid, and heat, and everything is thoroughly doused with sanitizing solution before the yeast is pitched. This ensures consistent performance and a yeast that drops out of suspension when it finishes gobbling up those sugars.
Recently, Angelo teamed up with Craig O’Herron and Sideswipe to collaborate on an Irish Stout they will call Collar and Elbow. “I’m really excited to share our yeast with another brewer, and see how it works for them,” Angelo said. “It’s usually pretty fun to work with other breweries, and they’re really great guys over at Sideswipe.”
Sideswipe was thrilled to work with Angelo, who has almost 2,000 batches of beer under his belt at Barley’s, and hundreds more from back when he presided over the brewery at the Smokehouse.
Angelo was also excited to brew with the women who work at Barley’s on Thursday, March 8th, (National Women’s Day) to brew a special batch of Tour de Hops in honor of the Pink Boots Society’s Collaborative Brew Day. The Pink Boots Society promotes the expansion of opportunities for women in the beer industry. So check in with Barley’s for news on when they’ll be tapping it toward the end of the month.