THE ASHBURTON STEAM BREWERY.
[By Our Special Reporter.] Some important alterationshaving'been v ; lately carried out at this well-known brewery in CatUerorl street, I yesterday ° took an opportunity of paying it a visit, t and seeing for myself what the enterprising proprietors have been about. • But before I proceed to describe what c I saw, let me jot down a few particu- * lars respecting the history of this favorite residence of Sir John Barley- s corn. The brewery has been established j about four years, and, like other local ] industries, has grown with the place* 1 Like all prudent people, the proprietors , commenced in a humble way, com- i paratively speaking, confident that the ' quality of the goods turned out would . sooner or later be recognised by the ' public and thus necessitate the exten- | si on of the business. The weekly brewr was at first only about 10 hogsheads, aid three working hands were all that . it was found necessary to employ. The firm is now employing seven hands, and turning out 24 hogsheads per week, while it possesses all the appliances on the premises for tripling the brew within the same period. In addition to this an entirely new branch of the business has been lately developed; this is the bottling. The firm is now disposing of 50 dozens of bottled ale and stout per week, and can hardly keep pace with the demand at that. The premises at present comprise a large two-storied building of corrugated iron, 50ft x 25ft, this contains the brewery proper, a large store-room, the office, small malt-house, tun-room, malt bin, etc. This bin contains at the present time 2,000 bushels —its utmost good old English malt. Close by is the hop room, containing a large quantity of both English and : Nelson hops; and an underground : cellar extending the whole length of the r building. At the rear of this building I is a wooden bottling store. And now, to come to the improvements. The r tun-room has been partitioned off — ; completely isolated by stout brick walls - —the object being to secure * the . equalisation of the temperature, and , the experiment is found to answer ; admirably. The merest tyro in these t matters knows how essential it is to t secure a tolerably equal temperature - for the beer in the great vat or tun — 1 here a huge vessel, approached by a '. short ladder, and large enough to > accommodate a swimmer. A short , and steep ladder to the left of 1 the tun-room conducts the visitor j to the spacious cellar, where row f upon row of casks are ranged—a 2 veritable wilderness of beer. The visitor’s first exclamation upon reaching these lower regions, is “ How beauti--3 fully cool !” upstairs the heat and * bustle and noise are a little oppressive. Here it is as cool as in a well-kept dairy. This cellar of which the pro- :- prietors are justly proud, has recently . been greatly improved. Bricks and mortar have replaced wood and iron, with the result that the cellar is 10 deg. cooler than it was formerly. There } are it seems 100 hogsheads of beer in [ the cellar at the present time. The 2 firm turns out three kinds of ale, and a special brew of stout as well. An inr vitation from my conductor to *■ “ sample ” the manufactures is readily 2 accepted, for talking is dry work, and 1 the weather warm enough to render 5 such a glass of beer as the cellar » affords “ drawn from the wood,” by no * means to be sneezed at. The beer trickles into the little tumbler most in--4 vitingly, and being held up to the light, proves to be as clear as sherry, and 3 goes as clean off the palate as cham--1 pagne. This, it appears, is the “ or--2 dinary beer,” but whatever it is—it is uncommonly good, as the numerous * clients seem to think. Large as is this : cellar, it is in contemplation by the I proprietors to double its size shortly. | It will then, with a holding capacity of : 200 hogsheads, be amongst the largest cellars in the colony. The object of making this addition, is to enable the brewers to brew stock ales during the winter for use in the ensuing summer—--1 an advantage to the buyer, which he 1 will doubtless appreciate. We have ' called it the Ashburton Steam Brewery, because every operation from the : simplest tothe most complex is effected, 1 wherever possible, by steam power. In the cellar, for instance, is a steam chain-hoist for raising the casks from the underground regions to the floor ot the store-house above, backed up against the doors of which the carts are waiting to convey the beer to the customers. The firm now does all its own coopering, keeping a cooper constantly employed in manufacturing new casks and repairing old ones. The proprietors are about to effect another great improvement. This is the erection of a two-storied malt-house, 80 by 30, of brick faced with stone. Judging from the plans, the building will be a very neat and tasteful one. The ground-floor will form the “growing floor,” as it is technically called, where the grain having been steeped in water, will be spread to germinate. The upper-floor of the building will be used for malt and barley storage. The Ashburton Brewery will be the first brewery in the County to manufacture its own malt, and when all the arrangements are completed, the firm will be able to turn out 400 bushels of malt per week. The appliances at this brewery are all of the latest and most approved kind, and wherever the introduction of labor-saving machinery has been possible, it has been introduced. Thus the bottling and filling machines are capable of turning out xoo dozen a day. The firm has carried off numerous prizes for its goods. At the Industrial Exhibition held at Ashburton in March last, the ale and stout from this brewery secured three first and three second awards. 1 In 1879, at the Christchurch Agricul- j tural and Pastoral Show, the same i goods carried off first and second , honors, while at our own local annual j shows the firm have also been large , prize takers. We understand that they i are going to exhibit their goods, both ( ale and stout, at the forthcoming In- x ternational Exhibition at Christchurch. ,
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THE ASHBURTON STEAM BREWERY., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 548, 31 January 1882
THE ASHBURTON STEAM BREWERY. Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 548, 31 January 1882
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