Mike Patterson (centre left) and Michael Hodgson (centre right) worked with KPU brewing instructors such as Emily Kokonas (left) and Jon Howe (right) before graduating and working in the industry. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Mike Patterson (centre left) and Michael Hodgson (centre right) worked with KPU brewing instructors such as Emily Kokonas (left) and Jon Howe (right) before graduating and working in the industry. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Langley brewing students bring home bronze medal

Beer developed by two KPU students among the 16,000 entries from across Canada

Langley university students have brewed up a bronze medal at the Canadian Brewing Awards (CBA) in the 2022 industry competition.

Mike Patterson and Michael Hodgson’s new beer, Summertime Witbier, got the university its first-ever recognition at CBA awards. The drink created by students of the brewing and brewery operations program won the award in the German style (Weiss) wheat beer category.

In total, there were 58 categories in the competition and more than 16,000 entries from across Canada.

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“We’re extremely proud of our brewing students and instructors,” said Jeff Dyck, a temporary dean, faculty of science and horticulture. “This is a significant accomplishment for them to win an award in a national industry competition, and recognition of their education, hard work, and creativity in their craft.”

Patterson and Hodgson, who created Summertime Witbier as their capstone project in the final term of the two-year brewing and brewery operations diploma program, had to brew it again with instructor Jon Howe specifically for the CBA submission.

“It’s exciting to see the impact of what we’re teaching, and that students are creating professional-quality, award-winning beers using the skills they’ve learned in the KPU brewing program,” said Howe.

Summertime, a refreshing witbier gets its smooth body from the addition of wheat malt and oats, while coriander balances the flavour and adds notes of citrus. The duo also added El Dorado hops to get the fruit flavours and aromas – “making this a thirst-quenching beer for a warm, sunny day,” commented Hodgson.

According to Patterson, Summertime Witbier is a refreshing, easy drinking beer that’s appealing to a variety of people with different tastes and preferences. Since completing the KPU program in April 2022, Patterson has been hired as a brewer at The Parkside Brewery in Port Moody, and Hodgson has been hired as a brewer at Russell Brewing in Surrey.

“I learned a lot of technical skills, especially quality analysis and quality control in the program, which my classmate Mike and I applied to our signature beer,” said Hodgson.

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The Canadian Brewing Awards use blind tasting to judge the quality of Canadian-made beer from breweries of all sizes.

Summertime Witbier is available to purchase for a limited time in six-packs of cans or growler fills at the KPU Brew Lab at KPU Langley on Fridays from 1 to 6 p.m.

It will also be on tap at the KPU booth at the Brewhalla Beer and Music Festival in Fort Langley on May 21. The university’s brew lab is part of its Langley campus, located at 20901 Langley Bypass.

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