A holiday in the sun was the request from the misses, this resulted in a google search along the lines of: craft beer Tuscany, and after a looking at a few web pages I came across Birrificio Bruton just to the north of Lucca, and im glad I did!
So a random email to Iacopo the brewery owner, saying we are going to be in Lucca for a holiday, that I was a home brewer and would love to visit his brewery, a link to this website and the promise I would bring along some of my beers. Iacopo replied saying yes come over, yet again the beer industry proved just how friendly it is.
The day before we were due to visit the brewery we bumped in to Iacopo in the best bar in Lucca (the probability of this was quite high as we later found out he lives just round the corner) De Cervesia. If you are ever in Lucca you really have to visit this bar! You know you are in for a treat when you have never tried any of the beer on the bottle list and there were 100’s and all from Italian breweries.
So we arrived at the brewery at about 11am, and Iacopo gave us a guided tour, and I have seen a few breweries in my time and this was one of the best setups I have come across, a 10HL brewhouse, with 7 conical ferments and a bottling line, kegging racking machine, all this and in a lovely old building with a bar and restaurant above. Below are a couple pictures of the brewhouse and fermenters.
So on to the important bit, the beers, and they are all very good, the highlights for me were:
- lilith – a cracking balanced pale ale
- 10 – a barleywine
- Limes – a saison, brewed with a portion of the fermentables coming from wine must – the best beer of the holiday 🙂 So much so I will be trying something similar very soon, just need to source the wine must
I took along a bottle of my East India Porter and a RIS so hopefully I did British home brewing proud.
I would just like to thank Iacopo again for answering a random email and inviting us into his brewery, showing us around and sharing a few beers, a cracking time was had.
And for anyone visiting Lucca this is a great place to stay San Marco Holidays, just to the south of the city 400m out side the wall.
And if you ever end up in Lucca a couple of restaurants you really should try are:
- Port Ellen Clan – great food, great single malt collection, and Bruton beers
- La Norma – The tasting menu for 30 euro was quite possible the best food I have ever eaten, fantastic knowledgeable staff, great atmosphere and a fantastic wine list (its not all about the beer), the Sassicia 2009 was truly fantastic!