St Austell develops new cask beer using AI

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Experimental brew: St Austell develops new cask beer using AI
Experimental brew: St Austell develops new cask beer using AI

Related tags The Cask Project Beer Brewing St austell

South-west-based pub operator and brewer St Austell has developed a new beer using artificial intelligence (AI).

Hand Brewed by Robots, a 4.2% ABV APA, has been created by St Austell assistant brewing manager Barnaby Skerret using AI.

The recipe for the new brew was created by an online generator, with Skerret feeding it instructions based on ingredients he wanted to use and the beer flavours required.

However, despite its computerised recipe, the beer has been crafted by hand using St Austell’s small batch kit.

Interesting results 

Skerret said: “The idea for the beer came from me working with AI tools in my general job with brewhouse automation.

“As I was talking to the AI one day I thought I’d ask it a question about brewing to catch it out as I was interested to see the results.

Pictured: Barnaby Skerret

“I told it to write me a recipe on some broad parameters of colours and flavours and it sent me some ideas, so I decided to turn them into a recipe.

“Though there were a couple of tweaks to make it cask appropriate, as it didn’t seem to know what cask was, which was quite interesting.”

Hand Brewed by Robots uses Willamette, Cascade and Sulatana hops, resulting in a tropical juicy and resinous flavour to the American ‘AI-PA’.

Quality checks 

The new brew marks the start of the Cornish brewers annual Cask Club series, which sees each brewer develop their own recipe and brew a small batch beer, producing around 40 casks which are then sold across select pubs in the South West.

While the experimental and novelty beer demonstrates the benefits of AI to the brewing sector, Skerret doesn’t think there are any future threats to the industry from the technology.

He continued: “On the beer side, too much requires human input whether that’s checking the ingredients and other quality checks that can’t be done by AI.

“It’s the same when the beer comes out the other side and we do tasting checks. An AI can never properly tell you whether that beer tastes fantastic or if it’s not up to scratch.”

Hand Brewed by Robots will be available in pubs from Friday 8 March.

Related topics The Cask Project

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