The St. Stefanus brewing process is vital to the production of the perfect beer. Jef Versele, our Master Brewer, is involved in each and every step to ensure that each bottle of St. Stefanus is of the highest quality.
Following the traditional Trappist beer brewing style, our process begins by combining water, three malts and a little sugar.
Our beer then goes through its initial fermentation with the addition of our first yeast. After this initial fermentation, we cool the beer in the lager room.
And this is when our brewing process gets even more interesting! Our bottling line is not just designed to package our beer, but also to facilitate the secondary fermentation. It is here that we add the original Jerumanus yeast along with one other yeast and some sugar.
The beer is then placed in the refermentation room for at least two weeks. The room is heated to assist the secondary fermentation and help the distinctive flavours of St. Stefanus to develop.
It is then on to our cellars, where the beer continues to mature and evolve for at least three months before it leaves the brewery.
Take a closer look at our brewing process:
One could say that the St. Stefanus brewing process does not even end once the beer has left the brewery. Thanks to the two yeasts and sugar added at the bottling stage, St. Stefanus will continue to mature as it ages.
A younger beer, one that has recently left the brewery, will have a much fruitier, fresher taste. As the beer ages, these flavours will develop to be more complex and aromatic.
This means that it is up to you, the consumer, to ultimately decide how you’d like your beer to taste. If you prefer your beer to have fruity tones and a sweet caramel nose, then drink it young. If you prefer a more rounded drinking experience, one with deep orange marmalade notes and flickering hints of vanilla, then allow your St. Stefanus to age and mature for up to 18 months.
Which is your favourite St. Stefanus age?