Podcast Episode 327: GABF Gold! Rob Malad of Metazoa Doubles Down on Decocted Scottish-Style Ale

Over the years, Metazoa has won more than a dozen GABF and World Beer Cup medals. The latest gold—for a double-decocted, Scottish-style ale made with ingredients on hand, minimal specialty malts, open fermentation, and yeast borrowed from their hazy IPA—is proof that there is more than one way to make a compelling and malt-forward ale.

Jamie Bogner Oct 31, 2023 - 7 min read

Podcast Episode 327: GABF Gold! Rob Malad of Metazoa Doubles Down on Decocted Scottish-Style Ale Primary Image

The Metazoa team accepting their 2023 GABF gold medal in Denver. Photo: Courtesy Brewers Association

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In this GABF Gold! edition of the podcast—the last of a few that have focused on gold medal–winners at the 2023 Great American Beer Festival—Jamie interviews Rob Malad, director of brewing operations at Metazoa in Indianapolis. Metazoa recently won gold for William Walrus, a Scottish-style ale and a product of necessity, made with brewing techniques designed to to overcome ingredient challenges while also staying true to the spirit of the style.

In this episode, Malad touches on:

  • brewing beers meant to be consumed more than once
  • using double decoction to build malt character in lieu of a broad range of speciality malt
  • building a Scottish ale recipe with pale malt, Munich malt, and small amounts of low-Lovibond speciality malts, but no British malts
  • using the English ale yeast typically used in their hazy IPA
  • brewing with minimal hops but balancing with carbonation
  • their medal-winning approach to saison
  • the mouthfeel impression of high Saaz loads
  • elements that set beers apart in competition

And more.

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Jamie Bogner is the Cofounder and Editorial Director of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®. Email him at [email protected].