Every beer has a story to tell and the tale behind our Tales From The Kettle series is steeped in the passion of creating unique and interesting beers…

The story begins each year with a teambuilding exercise, the 21A Employee Homebrew Competition, where our staff breaks into randomly selected teams who are challenged to come up with a winning homebrew recipe judged by the San Francisco Brewer’s Guild. The teams include everyone in the company from Pub servers, line cooks and bartenders, to the brewery’s packaging line, accountants, warehouse and marketing teams. It’s a tradition filled with friendly competition, and an ode to the brewery’s roots.

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This year’s winning beer is an exceptional Scottish-style ale brewed with black tea called, “Not Your Cup of Tea,” which pours a deep amber color and has elegant toffee bubbles and dense foam. The aroma is remarkable with a light waft of sweetness and a soft smokiness. A rich complex flavor dominates through multi-layers of malt character, and it closes out with a light spiciness from the black tea and a lingering light burnt caramel finish. The recipe was created by our graphic designer, a server at our Pub, our Chicago sales rep and one of our maintenance technicians.

Tales from Kettle

“Not Your Cup of Tea” is available now at our San Leandro and San Francisco locations, and is shipping nationwide in six packs and kegs in all 21A markets as part of the brewery’s Insurrection Series of small-batch, limited release beers.

But at 9% ABV, be warned… It may inspire you to sing and dance with your dog or cat, write prose and solve the world’s problems, or simply lull you into a deep state of inner peace. Get yourself some Tales from the Kettle and create your own tale, and enjoy the beer with or without a kilt.

Want to try home brewing this recipe on your own? Give it a whirl and let us know how it turns out!

Name: Tales from the Kettle – “Not Your Cup of Tea”
Batch Size: 5.5 gallons

Original Gravity: 1.082
Final Gravity: 1.021
ABV: 7.92%
IBU: 25
SRM: 29

14 lb – United Kingdom – Maris Otter Pale (81.3%)
13 oz – United Kingdom – Crystal 70L (4.7%)
8 oz – Belgian – Special B (2.9%)
8 oz – United Kingdom – Chocolate (2.9%)
4.5 oz – American – Smoked Malt (1.6%)
2 oz – United Kingdom – Peated Malt (0.7%)
1 lb – American – Victory (5.8%)

Mash @ 155 F

0.5 oz – Nugget @ 60 min
1 oz – Northern Brewer @ 5 min

Wyeast – Thames Valley II 1882

For the tea we used Lapsang Soughing tea. Dry hop and add to your liking.

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