These small batch brews are special, limited and, once gone, may never return. The Pilot Batch brewery is a space for our brewers to get creative – an opportunity to trial weird and wonderful things, turning the brewery into an experimental playground to get a little fruity.
Every three months, one of our brewers takes up the helm in our Byron brewery, running the day-to-day operations. During this time, they have the chance to brew their favourite beers and run the Pilot Batch program.
Meet Josh Waters, one of our resident brewers at the Byron Bay brewery who leads our other brewers through the Pilot Batch program.
Give us a bit of background about yourself.
I live in Ocean Shores with my wife and daughter after moving from Sydney’s Northern Beaches 12 years ago. I’ve been working with Stone & Wood for five years now, and have been brewing for four of those. After 20 years of working as a chef, I was keen for a change and was lucky enough to get a start at Stone & Wood.
What are your favourite styles of beer and why?
My favourite beer styles would be anything with big flavours. I love fresh, well-balanced IPAs, as well as the flavours and aromas of saisons. I also always look forward to the time we start brewing our annual Stone Beer, and am really into red beers at the moment.
What will you be brewing during your time here in Byron?
As I’m permanently based at the Byron brewery, I’m lucky enough to be brewing different and exciting beers all the time. I enjoy lots of opportunities to brew and learn about many beer styles – traditional and experimental. Beers that challenge our way of thinking are always a great thing.
Any beers you’re really excited about brewing and why?
I’m always excited to see what ideas are being discussed and then brewing them. Brewing beers under the Counter Culture banner will be fantastic, and also doing some more volume of our Pilot Beers. Being able to spread those beers further so that more people can try them will be great.
What do you like about the using the Pilot Batch brewery to experiment?
I love the manual aspect of the pilot kit, and doing everything from ordering materials to brewing and conditioning the beer, to then finally watching visitors in the Tasting Room enjoy the end result – it’s very rewarding.
It’s great collaborating with the team on new ideas and then working with our head brewer, Caolan, in turning those ideas into great beers.
Check out the video of Joshy on a recent trip to Tasmania for the Galaxy Hop Harvest: