June Green Drinks

There will be 3 speakers at the June 2012 Green Drinks Galway event
which takes place at 9pm this Thursday 7th June at the Cottage Bar,
Lower Salthill. In what promises to be an interesting and entertaining
presentation, Declan Moore, Billy Quinn and Nigel Malcolm of Galway’s
Moore Group, describe their continuing experiments in eco-friendly
ancient brewing of beer using a ‘fulacht fiadh’. Posters are attached
(PDF format for printing) All are welcome to attend!
FACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/242453705861386/

Declan Moore is the managing director of Moore Group and has 20 years
experience as a field archaeologist. Billy Quinn has worked throughout
the country as a field archaeologist on wide a range of sites ranging
from Neolithic on. Nigel Malcolm is General Manager of Moore Group and
provides all the practical nous and knowledge on brewing and herbal
Moore Group (http://www.mooregroup.ie/) is a multi-disciplinary
environmental, planning and heritage resource management consultancy.
Their work includes Environmental Impact Assessments (EIS), surveys of
terrestrial, freshwater and marine environments (in conjunction with
Moore Marine), conservation management planning, ecological landscape
design, built heritage and archaeological consultancy and fieldwork
including excavation and specialist services.

The majority of Irish field monuments are defined by their names – a
standing stone is a standing stone and a ringfort is a ringfort but
not so the ‘fulacht fiadh’, characterised by its horseshoe-shaped
mound and associated trough. The name derives from Geoffrey Keating’s
seventeenth century manuscript ‘Foras Feasa ar Éirinn’ and as a
complete term does not appear in any early manuscripts. Conventional
wisdom, based largely on M.J. O’Kelly’s 1952 experiments in
Ballyvourney, Co. Cork suggests that they were used for cooking. John
Waddell points out that “the fact that meat can be boiled in them does
not prove that this was their main purpose”. Alternative theories that
have been proposed include bathing, dyeing and tanning. It is however,
generally agreed that their primary function was to heat water by
depositing fired stones into a water-filled trough.

“One hungover morning at breakfast, discussing the natural
predisposition of all men to seek means to alter our minds, coupled
with our innate inquisitiveness (and more mundane preparations for the
excavation of a ‘fulacht fiadh’), Billy came to a sudden and startling
conclusion: fulachts were Ireland’s earliest breweries!” Having
successfully brewed a rudimentary ale using a ‘fulacht fiadh’, they
now brew an annual ale based on ancient recipes and methods. Lately
they’ve been brewing a Viking Ale, based on a recipe recounted to
antiquarian John Locke and published in the Ulster Journal of
Archaeology in 1859.