CASK CASK EVERYWHERE
HISTORY OF CASK
Greene King has been brewing quality cask ales at the Westgate Brewery in Bury St Edmunds for over 200 years! It's exciting to think that we've had a brewery on our site since 1799.
Even more impressive is that brewing in the town can be traced back as far as the Domesday Book in 1086. We are really proud of our heritage, its taught us a lot. We're also proud that we are as passionate about our beers today as our brewing ancestors were before us. We know it's this innate passion in our people that means we brew quality beers day in, day out.
THE BREWING PROCESS
We built a "new" brewhouse - Westgate Brewery - in 1938 and we're still using the building to brew all our beers today. Its designed so that gravity transfers the ingredients from one floor to the next for each stage of the brewing process.
First, we extract the liquor – or water – from the wells and pump it to the top of the Brewhouse. We screen the malt so that we know we’re only using the very best. Then we crush it to produce grist.
We mix the grist with hot water to form a porridge-like mixture called mash and pump it into the ‘mash tun’. Mashing takes place around 65̊C and produces a liquid called ‘sweet wort’.
Next, we add the hops to the copper. We boil them together with the sweet wort for around an hour.
We then allow the mixture to cool. Cooling the beer quickly is important, since the beer will begin to oxidise and produce off flavors almost immediately at these temperatures.
Once it’s cool, we transfer the wort to the fermentation vessel and mix it with oxygen on the way. We then add – or pitch – the yeast, which converts the sugars to alcohol. It also produces carbon dioxide, giving the beer that little bit of fizz. The yeast usually takes around five days to ferment. And once the fermentation is complete, we have beer!
We can then bottle or barrel the beer, label it and prepare it for delivery across Britain and around the world ready for you to enjoy at your favourite local.