LUKE NICHOLAS

MASTER BREWER

In October 2007, Steam Brewing Company sold the Epic Brewing Company and Epic brand to Head Brewer / General Manager, Luke Nicholas. Epic Brewing Company is located in Otahuhu, Auckland, New Zealand. Epic beers remain contract brewed at Steam Brewing Company. One of their first beers, Epic Pale Ale, was also one of NZ's first craft beers and was highly praised and awarded.

Their beers have since won multiple awards in New Zealand and Australia. "Epic is widely known for its powerful list of IPA’s including the sought-after Hop Zombie and the multiple award winning Armageddon IPA.”

Epic Brewing Company started exporting to Australia in May 2009, to the United States and Sweden in 2010 and to Belgium and Italy in 2011.

Nicholas was invited by Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Brewery to brew a beer with him for the Discovery Channel series Brew Masters, where the duo concocted a beer called Portamarillo, brewed with pohutukawa wood-smoked Tamarillo fruit.

In 2011, Kelly Ryan joined Luke and the two travelled around New Zealand, filming NZ Craft Beer TV, during which they visited 44 breweries around New Zealand. This show resulted in a collaborative recipe that they thought captured the current state of New Zealand brewing, a 6% New Zealand Pale Ale called Mash Up.

2011 also saw the release of Epic Hop Zombie, an 8.5% Double IPA, Epic LARGER, an 8.5% Imperial Pilsner and the first beer in their new Epicurean series, a Coffee & Fig Imperial Oatmeal Stout at 8% abv. Luke continues to innovate with Hazy IPA's joining the portfolio and striving for a new release every month.

Epic is unique in the use of high levels of hops. Epic has been the largest user of aroma hops in NZ for the last 10 years. We use hop varieties like winemakers use grape varieties. Epic is the only brewery in NZ that imports its own hops direct from the growers.

AWARDS:
Epic Armageddon IPA
Gold & Best in Class - 2015 Australian International Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Bronze - 2010 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2009 BrewNZ Beer Awards[2]
Epic Pale Ale
Silver - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Bronze - 2009 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2008 BrewNZ Beer Awards[3]
Silver - 2007 Australian International Beer Awards
Supreme Champion Beer - 2006 New Zealand International Beer Awards.[4]
Gold & Best in Class - 2006 New Zealand International Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2006 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Silver - 2006 Australian International Beer Awards
Epic Mayhem
Gold - 2010 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Silver - 2007 Australian International Beer Awards
Bronze - 2007 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2006 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Epic Barrel Aged IPA
Bronze - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Gold & Best in Class - 2010 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Epic Porter
Silver - 2007 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Epic Lager
Silver - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Bronze - 2009 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Bronze - 2007 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Epic Thornbridge Stout
Bronze - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
Oak Barrel Aged Epic Thornbridge Stout
Silver - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards
NZ Craft Beer TV Mash Up
Silver - 2011 BrewNZ Beer Awards

ACCOLADES:
Best Beers of Australia and New Zealand 2010 - RateBeer.com
Best Beer 2008 - Metro Magazine
Best Beer 2007 - NZ Listener

RECIPES

US PALE ALE - ALL GRAIN

EPIC PALE ALE

20 LITERS | ABV 5.4 | IBU ~45 | SRM 5.3 | MASH EFFICIENCY 75% | PRE BOIL 24L | OG 1.052 | FG 1.011
MASH 90 MIN @ 67°C | BOIL 60 MIN

NOTE:
If you know the IBU of your Cascade hops then use Cascade for bittering. If you are using home grown Cascade cones use Magnum pellets for bittering. Adjust in Beer Smith for IBU.

Epic Pale Ale uses USA Cascade. Home grown NZ Cascade with an IBU of around 7% AA will make a slightly different but still enjoyable beer. Again formulate the recipe in Beer Smith for your hops and equipment.

Read our article on the Influence of Terroir on Hop Flavour which includes grapical analysis of Cascade grown in different parts of the world.
Commercially grown NZ Cascade has been renamed Taiheke.

01.

MALT

• 3950g GLADFIELD AMERICAN ALE MALT 2.5 SRM [85.5%]
• 224g GLADFIELD MUNICH MALT 7.6 SRM [4.8%]
• 224g GLADFIELD GLADIATOR MALT 4.2 SRM [4.8%]
• 224g GLADFIELD LIGHT CRYSTAL 27.4 SRM [4.8%]

02.

HOPS

BITTERING:
• 10g MAGNUM 12% AA @ 60 MINUTES) [12.9 IBU]
FLAVOUR/AROMA:
• 28g CASCADE 5.5% AA @ 30 MINUTES [12.7 IBU]
• 28g CASCADE 5.5% AA @ 10 MINUTES [6 IBU]
 STEEP/WHIRLPOOL FOR 20 MIN - START @ 90°C:
• 56g CASCADE 5.5% AA [12.7 IBU]
DRY HOP FOR 3 DAYS BEFORE PACKAGING:
 • 56g CASCADE

03.

ADDITIONS 

ADD 15 MINS BEFORE FLAME OUT:
• 1/4 TSP IRISH MOSS (or clarifier of choice)

04.

YEAST 

• 1ST CHOICE: WLP 001 CALIFORNIA ALE
• 2ND CHOICE: WLP O90 SAN DIEGO SUPER YEAST

NZ PALE ALE - ALL GRAIN

EPIC & GOOD GEORGE NZ PALE ALE

20 LITERS | ABV 5.6 | IBU ~40 | SRM 9.9 | MASH EFFICIENCY 75% | PRE BOIL 24L | OG 1.063 | FG 1.014
MASH 90 MIN @ 67⁰C | SPARGE 3 LITERS | BOIL 60 MIN

NOTES:
COLLAB BETWEEN LUKE NICHOLAS - EPIC & KELLY RYAN - GOOD GEORGE

01.

MALT

• 3500g GLADFIELD AMERICAN ALE MALT 2.5 SRM [74.5%]
• 480g GLADFIELD MUNICH MALT 7.6 SRM [10.2%]
• 385g GLADFIELD TOFFEE MALT 7.6 SRM [8.2%]
• 240g TORRIFIED WHEAT 2.0 SRM [5.1%]
• 112g GLADFIELD LIGHT CRYSTAL MALT 27.4 SRM [2.4%]

02.

HOPS

• 5g PACIFIC JADE 13% AA @ 60 MINUTES
• 6g PACIFIC JADE 13% AA @ 30 MINUTES
• 5g MOTUEKA 7% AA @ 30 MINUTES
STEEP / WHIRLPOOL FOR 30 MINUTES @ 90⁰C
• 28g WAI-ITI 3% AA
• 28g MOTUEKA 7% AA
• 28g PACIFIC JADE 13% AA
DRY HOP FOR 6 DAYS BEFORE PACKAGING:
• 16g MOTUEKA
• 16g PACIFIC JADE
• 16g WAI-ITI
DRY HOP FOR 3 DAYS BEFORE PACKAGING:
• 16g MOTUEKA
• 16g PACIFIC JADE
• 16g WAI-ITI



03.

ADDITIONS 

ADD 15 MINS BEFORE FLAME OUT:
• 1/4 TSP IRISH MOSS (or clarifier of choice)

04.

YEAST 

• 1ST CHOICE: WLP 001 CALIFORNIA ALE
• 2ND CHOICE: WLP O90 SAN DIEGO SUPER YEAST

US IPA - ALL GRAIN

EPIC ARMAGEDDON

20 LITERS | ABV 6.66 | IBU ~66.6 | SRM 5.5 | MASH EFFICIENCY 75% | PRE BOIL 24L | OG 1.064 | FG 1.014
MASH 90 MIN @ 67°C | BOIL 60 MIN


NOTES:

01.

MALT

• 5300g GLADFIELD AMERICAN ALE MALT 2.5 SRM
• 224g GLADFIELD GLADIATOR MALT 5.1 SRM
• 224g GLADFIELD LIGHT CRYSTAL MALT 32 SRM

02.

HOPS

BOIL:
• 14g CTZ 14% AA @ 60 MINUTES
• 28g CASCADE 5.5% AA @ 30 MINUTES
• 28g CENTENNIAL 10% AA @ 30 MINUTES
WHIRLPOOL/STEEP FOR 30 MINUTES:
• 28g CASCADE 5.5% AA
• 28g CENTENNIAL 10% AA
• 28g SIMCOE 13% AA
DRY HOP FOR 3 DAYS BEFORE PACKAGING:
• 28g CASCADE
• 28g CENTENNIAL
• 28g SIMCOE
• 28g CTZ

03.

ADDITIONS 

ADD 15 MINS BEFORE FLAME OUT:
• 1/4 TSP IRISH MOSS (or clarifier of choice)

04.

YEAST 

• 1ST CHOICE: WLP001 CALIFORNIA ALE YEAST

NZ PILSNER - ALL GRAIN

EPIC LAGER

20 LITERS | ABV 5.0 | IBU ~25 | SRM 3.1 | MASH EFFICIENCY 75% | PRE BOIL 24L | OG 1.049 | FG 1.011
MASH 90 MIN @ 67⁰ C | BOIL 90 MIN 

NOTES: 
Substitutes for Santium hops:
• Citra
• Spalt
• Tettnang

01.

MALT

MASH:
• 4300g GLADFIELD PILSNER MALT 1.9 SRM [97.5%]
• 56g GLADFIELD (CARA PILS) TOFFEE MALT 7.6 SRM [1.3%]
• 56g GLADFIELD SOUR GRAPES MALT 2 SRM [1.3%]

02.

HOPS

BOIL:
• 4g HALLERTAU MAGNUM 14% AA @ 60 MINUTES
• 11g LIBERTY NZ 5.9% AA @ 30 MINUTES
• 56g SANTIUM 6% AA @ 10 MINUTES

03.

ADDITIONS 

ADD 15 MINS BEFORE FLAME OUT:
• 1/4 TSP IRISH MOSS (or clarifier of choice)

04.

YEAST 

• 1ST CHOICE: WLP 830 GERMAN LAGER

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