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Event Recap | NYC Beer Week in Review & Funky Jewbelation

Event Recap | NYC Beer Week in Review & Funky Jewbelation
Carly Mento

ABV: 9.4%

February has come to a close, and with it, a new playing field for craft beer. During NYC Beer Week, Shmaltz Brewing’s tasting event for their newly released Funky Jewbelation left me reminiscing of a flavor not easily forgotten. The name is certainly indicative of what awaits beneath the bottle cap.

Photo courtesy of Shmaltz Brewing
Photo courtesy of Shmaltz Brewing

Marking its 20th year, Shmaltz Brewing presented this jewel at the Brewers in Review event on the 24th. I had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with the colorful and super creative head brewer Jeremy Cowan while sharing a taste with a crowd of funky-lovers.

The newest release of the Funky series for 2016 includes an integration of seven craft beers that have been aged in bourbon and rye whisky barrels (for 11 months) to produce its fifth variant. Jeremy describes Funky Jewbelation as a bit of a “kitchen sink” brew, but with remarkable complexity, sour appeal and hop-forward character.

For those unfamiliar with the half-decade Funky series, it was born during desperate times. Production of Shmaltz’s 15th anniversary Jewbelation seasonal went south, leaving hundreds of barreled batches off-brand. Being the beer genius that he is, Jeremy proposed the idea of blending a bit of the almost-gone-bad with the deliciously good, and voilà! Some funk-town grooviness swept the craft beer-drinking nation.

What makes this one different than the last? Jewbelation 19 serves as the base beer for this iteration, separating it from leading funky pack predecessors. Personally tested and chosen are the best tasting batches of barrel aged and salvaged favorites as additions. Making the cut are: Hanukkah, Chanukah: Pass The Beer, Messiah Nut Brown Ale, Bock Bock, Bittersweet Lenny’s R.I.P.A., Rejewvenator 2014, Origin Pomegranate Strong Ale, and Reunion Ale ’14: A Beer For Hope.

In a few small sips, I savored the dark and tangy concoction swirling inside my stem wine glass. Through the nose, a scent with something citrus and sour sat strong, while the palate played with layers of flavor I can only describe as robust. Followers of Funky often leave reviews as mixed as the beers themselves, but I recommend you snag a 2016 to truly comprehend this craft. Cheers!

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