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Sour Series: Yazoo Brewing | Trio (Batch #2)

Sour Series: Yazoo Brewing | Trio (Batch #2)
Jesse Valenciana

Brandon Jones is no stranger to barrel-aging and storytelling, using both his words and beer as the medium. Jones is a brewer, beer blender and self-proclaimed “funk wrangler” at Yazoo Brewing, one of the godfathers of the Nashville’s craft beer scene. When Brandon isn’t wrangling funk, he’s sharing recipes on his blog, EmbracetheFunk.com, where he talks about spontaneous fermentation, wild yeast and bacteria—all of what give wild ales their unique and “sour” profiles. On Embrace the Funk, Brandon states his modest goal of making the world of sour beers a bit more approachable.

Trio (Batch #2), in the most basic sense, is exactly that—an approachable sour beer. Trio is a red ale brewed with a blend of Brettanomyces and raspberries that ferments in a wooden barrel. This cinnamon-colored beer has a strong, tart cherry nose to go with a rich, viscous mouthfeel, a subtle tartness and finishes with an underlying charred oak flavor. The beer was a perfect accompaniment to my unnecessarily large piece of lasagna. The maltiness initially made a heavy dish heavier. However, the tartness ultimately cut through the richness, and its raspberry notes were brought out by the tomato sauce.

The Story Behind the Sour

Curiosity fueled a deeper dig uncovering a better, more layered story, matching the multiple flavor dimensions of the beer itself. The story is what makes this beer special and resonates with the local craft beer drinker; it’s a story of three proud Tennessee lineages and an ode to everything local. The cask the beer ages in began its life in the most possible Tennessee way—as a whiskey barrel for Jack Daniels (ever hear of ’em?). After finishing its duties with Jack Daniels, the barrel made its way to Arrington Vineyards where its job was a full-time red wine vessel.

Jones got his hands on this barrel and knew he had to tell the story through his beer. Choosing the red ale as a base beer to play into the red wine character, he then chose his specific Brettanomyces blend to play off the charred barrel character of sour mash whiskey and finished with an addition of raspberries to tie everything together.

Jones says that Trio is one of his favorite beers to open for folks that appreciate wine and spirits over wild beer. He believes that it has that middle ground familiarity. If Jones wants to make sour beer approachable, Trio certainly sets him on the path of realizing that goal.

Photos provided by Jesse Valenciana

Trio comes in at 7.7% ABV in 500ML bottles and is sure to please!


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