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Everyone’s Wild about new beer sensation in Newy

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A group of locals have turned to science to create a new taste sensation for beer lovers.

And, at The Rogue Scholar on Thursday 27 October, the fruits of their labour will be unveiled.

Wild Yeast Zoo is primed to release its first sour ale, Wild Scholar, concocted in collaboration with the Union Street brewery.

rogue scholar
Adam Hardy from Rogue Scholar with the on-site brewery process.

Brewed from Hunter flora and collected by local microbrewers and community members, the final product’s the result of a citizen science project.

Wild Yeast Zoo, which received ON Prime funding from the CSIRO – a program that helps researchers translate innovation into real-world impacts, aims to generate a biobank of yeast that can be used to make, and brew, the sour beer.

The process will require fewer chemicals, water and power, making it unique in its sustainability.

Scientist Evan Gibbs works with his team in the BRaT Lab.

Scientist Evan Gibbs admitted he was excited to join the project as part of the BRaTlab team.

“Using the miracles of science, we will isolate individual yeasts from a plethora of different organisms and determine whether they have scientific use,” he said.

“In collecting these native samples, we hope to uncover new species with new metabolisms or metabolic pathways.

“This would have massive implications on the way we understand and utilise biofuels in the real world.

“So, we encourage everyone to join us in celebrating this exciting achievement on Thursday.”

The sample collection kits will be distributed to participants to collect their own yeast samples across the Hunter region.

Collection kits are available to participants in the Hunter region, too.

Active citizen scientists send in yeast samples collected from native flora, along with information about the collection location, soil and surroundings.

Benjamin Matthews, from the University of Newcastle, is also passionate about what this will mean for the Hunter.

And, he has his sights set on taking the project even further afield.

Some of the team together at The Rogue Scholar (Benjamin Matthews, Evan Gibbs, Adam Hardy, and a few of the UoN students who are working on the project).

“By working with local industry partners, we’re making sure that this venture delivers real benefits to the Newcastle community,” Mr Matthews said.

“It’s important to us to support ethical businesses and sustainable practices.

“If successful, this project has the ability to change the way we think about biofuels.”

The open launch event will take place from 5pm at The Rogue Scholar in Union Street.

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