We brewed this beer in honor of our Bellingham sister city Tateyama, Japan. The Bellingham Sister Cities Association is a community based organization that seeks to promote intercultural understandings, economic and tourism ties, and world peace. Second fun fact, Bellingham has seven different sister cities across four different continents.
First introduced to the Japanese by the Dutch, during 17th century Edo period, Japanese Lagers remain one of the most popular styles of beer in Japan. Maybe you've heard of Sapporo, Suntory, Kirin, or Asahi Super Dry (Japan's most popular lager). Or maybe you one of the countless thousands that have heard the term Japanese lager and simply assumed it was only served in a conveyor-powered sushi bar. Regardless of your definition or your experience with this style of beer, introduced by the Dutch, Japanse lagers are slowly growing in popularity by local and regional breweries in the United States.
To brew a Japanese lager, it starts with whole rice and German Pilsner malt, brewed during a 240-minute cereal/decoction mash. This old-school approach to brewing requires the removal of some of the "mash", which is boiled separately before returned to the boiling kettle. This technique was mostly used during a period in which breweries didn't a consistent method of extracting all the sugars, flavor, and color from the malt. In addition to rice and malt, Aslan used Strisselspalt, which had its heyday back when Budweiser used this overlooked hop in place of traditional German Saaz hops. The end result is a beer that described as "dry, crisp, and intensely satisfying".
The brewery hopes that you not only visit their brewery and taproom but consider a visit to Bellingham's sister city, Tateyama in Japan, as a way of expanding appreciation of this unique style of lager and the people that have been enjoying it for centuries.
At 5.2% Alcohol by Volume and 18 IBU, this beer should pair well with a plate of sushi, sashimi, or a relaxing book in your backyard.
Aslan Brewing Company is located at 1330 N Forest St, Bellingham, WA 98225. For more information, visit https://aslanbrewing.com/ which includes hours, current releases and their second location Aslan Depot.
IT ALL STARTED IN THE SUMMER OF 2012, as a conversation over a pint of beer at a local Bellingham pub. We shared our dreams and soon realized that the elements of our future were sitting amongst us: a businessman, a craft beer believer and, most importantly, a brewer. Together, Frank Trosset, Pat Haynes, and Jack Lamb would go on to build and operate a pilot brewery in Downtown Bellingham, where, for the next twelve months of our lives, we would research and develop the knowledge and skills needed to start our own commercial microbrewery and restaurant.
We called it ASLAN BREWING COMPANY, and quickly realized its identity through our personal commonalities. With a commitment to organic ingredients, locally sourced goods, and low-impact practices, we aimed to offer the community something new and refreshing, the sustainable way. As for “ASLAN”: a lion is the King of the Jungle, a regal figure rooted in nature, and aslan is the Turkish word for lion. This aligned our desire to operate a world-class brewery all while preserving the raw and exotic elements of the world. Through hard work and perseverance, we brewed over 130 original pilot batches, connected with local brewers and beer lovers alike, and designed a business plan catered to craft quality and creativity.
In the final days of Summer 2013, we were given the keys to what would become Aslan’s Brewpub. Plans and permits in hand, we began our nine-month journey into construction that was done primarily by us, Boe and Don Trosset. After months of unconditional commitment, Boe Trosset was added as an invaluable member of the ownership team. Fast forward to today and we are four great friends who have together manifested our dream of owning and operating an organic brewery. We are proud and fortunate to be working with many of our close friends and to be part of the amazing community that is Bellingham.