Russell Brewing Company

Our Brewery
Brewing Process
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Russell Brewing Company

Ingredients It all starts by selecting the best possible ingredients.

Grain: We use premium Canadian two-row barley malt as the base of all our beers. Depending on the beer, we also add a varying amount of specialty malts from Scotland. In addition, we use Canadian wheat to brew our seasonal Russell Lemon Wheat Ale.

Hops: Hops is what makes beer taste like beer. It gives it that distinctive bitter flavour and aroma. It also acts as a natural preservative and, much like tannins in wine, hops help give beer a slightly textured feel. Russell Brewing Company uses Willamette and Cascade Aroma Hops grown in the Yakima Valley in Southern Washington. These hops are nicely rounded and not overly bitter.

Yeast: You could say that the “secret ingredient” in Russell beer is our yeast. Our yeast is exclusive to Russell Brewing Company. No other brewery can reproduce or purchase the same yeast. Our yeast is stable and produces consistent results and flavours for every brew. In fact, in case anything was to happen to the brewery, we keep a sample of our yeast in a lab off premise. 

Water: In British Columbia, we have one of the most pristine sources of water in the world. It is crisp, clear and cleaned and ideal for brewing premium beer. 

Brewing Process

The following is an overview of the process of how beer is made at Russell Brewing Company.

Step 1 – Grain Mill

The barley malt goes into the mill where it is cracked open allowing the sugars to be released from the grain. The cracked grain then travels up the auger and into the hopper where it is then released into mash tun.

Step 2 – Mashing

As the cracked grain feeds into the mash tun, water is added to the mix and the Brew Master begins mashing (or churning) the mixture. After the mixture, which is now known as the mash, has been mixed well, it is left to sit for one hour.

Step 3 – Sparging 

After one hour, the Brew Master gently flushes the mash with hot water and the liquid is then filtered into the brew kettle. This liquid is now referred to by brewers as the wort.

Step 4 – Brew Kettle

The wort is boiled for one to two hours, depending on the recipe. During the boil, the Brew Master adds preservative hops at the start of the brew and aromatic hops towards the end of the brew. He also adds a natural clarifying agent called Irish Moss which helps remove large particles from the liquid.
Note: Irish Moss is a seaweed that is harvested off the coast of Newfoundland. It has a positive and negative charge and attracts large particles which then drop to the bottom of the liquid.

Step 5 – Whirl Pool

The next stage of the brewing process is called whirl pool where the liquid is pumped out and back into the brew kettle which creates a whirl pool-like action. The heavy particles (called the trub) are pushed to the bottom of the kettle, leaving a brilliantly clean wort. The wort is then run out of the brew kettle, through the heat exchanger unit and the temperature of the liquid is cooled down to help create ideal conditions for the yeast to take effect.

Step 6 – Fermenting

From the heat exchange unit, the liquid is then pumped into the fermenter and the yeast is added. The yeast eats the sugar from the liquid and releases carbon dioxide and alcohol.

Step 7 – Conditioning

After the beer has completed fermentation, it is moved to a conditioning tank and conditioned (or matured) for 3 – 6 weeks (depending on the type of beer that is being brewed). This conditioning period allows the flavours of the brew to integrate resulting in a full-flavoured, well-rounded product.

Step 8 – Filtration 

 All Russell products are carefully filtered down to 1 micron, which is ideal for draught beer. The filtration process is carefully monitored by the Brew Master to ensure that a clean, high-quality product is delivered.

Step 9 – Packaging of Beer

The beer is then packaged ready for direct delivery to a variety of fine pubs and eateries and private liquor stores located throughout Western Canada.