#barleywine – PorchDrinking.com
Before Revolution Brewing releases the next two entries in their highly vaunted Deep Wood series, they’ll already be able to boast a FoBAB gold medal for one of those two. Very Special Old Ryeway (V.S.O.R.) and Straight Jacket will be released at the brewery after V.S.O.R. earned top marks in the Other Strong Dark Beer Category at this weekends Festival of Barrel-Aged Beers.
It has been a busy summer for Revolution Brewing. Between their Midlife Crisis barrel-aged release and the hyped-up IPA collaboration with Hop Butcher coming later this week, Chicago’s largest independent brewer has made headlines during the hotter months. That being said, year three of Revolution’s acclaimed Deep Wood barrel-aged series is set to generate buzz among the beer-drinking community for the upcoming colder months thanks to its consistent release of new and old canned barrel-aged creations from October to January. The 2019-2020 roster includes five returning favorites and five new creations, all available in 4-packs of 12oz cans. Here is what you need to know.
Hot or cold, Revolution Brewing sure knows how to throw a release party. Hundreds of barrel-aged fanatics, myself included, made their seasonal pilgrimage to Revolutionâ€™s Kedzie taproom for the latest Deep Wood release. This series has quickly grown to national acclaim thanks to its bold portfolio of Barleywines, Barrel-Aged Stouts and adventurously-boozy experiments like last yearâ€™s Code Switch, a Barrel-Aged Imperial Ale made with blackberries.
Many people associate Deep Wood beers with huge parkas, plunging temperatures and bitter Chicago winters given its annual winter release cadence. Boozy beers that push ABV limits typically go well with sub-zero winter nights. But Revolutionâ€™s Midlife Crisis Barleywine release had none of the expected barrel-aged beer release trimmings. Coats were swapped for tanktops, boots for flip flops, and freezing temps for 100 degrees and brutal humidity.Â
Big Stouts and Barleywines are typically released in the fall and winter. The cold and sometimes downright freezing temperatures create a perfect atmosphere to drink beers that are more than 12% ABV. So naturally, when Revolution Brewing announced that two big English Barleywines are getting released in mid-July, it turned heads.
Schlafly is releasing a Barrel Aged Barleywine, the last “From The Ibex Cellar” series of 2018. The Schlafly Ibex Cellar series is one for which I’ve grown antiquated since my first visit to the Ibex Cellar in 2017, located beneath the historic Schlafly taproom in downtown St. Louis with friend and local brewing legend, Stephen Hale.
We’re finally feeling the weather changes here in Northern California. It’s beautiful, and my favorite time of the year. Not only because of the crisp air, but because it’s now barleywine season. Don’t get me wrong, I can drink barleywine anytime of the year; however, it’s difficult to find someone to crush the strong stuff with in the middle of summer.
I attended the 25th annual barleywine festival at Toronado in San Francisco a few weeks ago. 50 taps flowing, sweaty bodies crowding the bar, and the smell of future hangovers filled the room; I was in heaven. Soon I was sampling with other malt enthusiasts. A ton of great and not-so-great examples of the sweet stuff were tried, but one was particularly delightful.
After last year’s strong Deep Wood series, Revolution Brewing in Chicago announced 10 beers in the series for 2018-19. The first two, VSOJ (Very Special Old [Straight] Jacket) and Code Switch, were released Friday and the brewery has picked up right where they left off last year.
MadTree Brewing is a major player in the Ohio beer scene, and among the largest breweries in Cincinnati’s thriving craft market. The company built a new production brewery in early 2017, and have grown rapidly, but sustainably in the half decade since their founding. Their quirky but smart beer portfolio and attractive packaging are now available all around Ohio, as well as some areas of Indiana and Kentucky.
In Chicago, in November, it’s almost impossible to not run into a great barrel-aged beer. Begyle Brewing will release two of its own starting on Friday (Nov 17) and both are worthy of standing in line to get. Barrel-Aged Imperial Pajamas will be released on Nov 17th, with Batch 500 being released the following Friday.
I remember being forced to read Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities in high school. To explain the tome’s epic verbosity, I subscribe to the myth that Charlie was paid by the word and have been permanently scarred by the experience. I mention Dickens because he would likely have been an inspiration to the British poet for whom this beer is named – Thomas Hardy. Hardy was a writer of world-renown but unfortunately, thanks to his compatriot’s writing style, there’s zero chance of me putting down Stephen King to pick up Jude the Obscure anytime soon. His namesake brew however, Thomas Hardy’s Ale, that’s a different story.
Like many a Pirate’s doomed lusts for treasure, I’ve frequently attempted (and failed) to get my hands on Black Lotus Brewing Ninja Pirate to review it for the PorchDrinking.com audience. Winning a gold medal for best strong ale at the World Beer Cup tends to bring some competition for the bottles.
My first attempt, a week and a half after its release, failed because the beer was sold out. In my second attempt to procure a bottle of Ninja Pirate, a mere two days after the beer release, I was at least laughed at by head brewer Nick Joseph. It took one more failure before I finally got my hands on a bottle and subsequently found time to share the pride of Clawson, MI with you all. Trust me; Ninja Pirate is worth the wait.
I’ll be real honest with everyone, I don’t know much about basketball. I do, however, appreciate the fanfare and competitiveness of March Madness. I can’t tell you how many conversations I’ve heard of people describing, in depth, how well their bracket was doing or how it became “busted.” If I had created a bracket, mine would most definitely rank last.
As the calendar gets ready to turn to November there probably isn’t anyone happier than Goose Island as they get ready to release 2016 Bourbon County Brand Stout. Following a tumultuous year that featured two separate refunds of four of the six variants of 2015 BCBS, the new lineup has been announced and craft beer fans around the country are getting ready for the Black Friday release.
Beneath the gaze of the iconic court jester, you’ll find a set of glass doors, which bear the number “21.” That’s 21 years of defying expectations. 252 months of eschewing style guidelines. 7,665 days (give or take a few leap days) of perfecting their craft.
Collaboration has been a vital part of countless creative endeavors throughout history. The idea that multiple unique approaches can come together and produce something unique to individual intent and execution has allowed us to imagine and re-imagine countless approaches to art, music, news and just about every other facet of life. Thankfully, beer has been no exception, a perfect example being the Double or Nothing from Lawson’s Finest Liquids and Otter Creek Brewing Company.
This piece was written and composed by PorchDrinking.com staff Tristan Chan, Cory Pelc, Kelissa Heiber, Kara Loo, Phil Joyce, Will Dozier, and Desiree Duzich with special contribution from Brittany Werges of 303 Magazine.
In a lot of ways, looking back on the 2016 Vail Big Beers Belgians and Barleywines festival is fairly cut and dry. Everything was amazing. It really is that simple. And yet, I’d be disappointing not only myself, but more importantly organizer Laura Lodge, by leaving you with merely a singular over-the-top statement about the fest. I dare not use the word hyperbole because while my descriptions may seem gratuitous, they are one hundred percent truthful.
Cover image courtesy of vaildaily.com
AC Golden – Kriek Noir
The base sour beer was then allowed to ferment on 800lbs of Colorado grown sweet and sour cherries. 5.5 % ABV
Allagash – Nancy
Balaton & Montmorency cherries. The …
ABV: 10% | IBU: 50
New Belgium Brewing Blackberry Barleywine is just the fruit forward jammy jam beer you needed this winter.
It should come as no surprise that New Belgium Brewing Company holds a special place in my heart. As I’ve documented before, I first fell in love with craft beer in the winter of 2009 while taking advantage of free tasters in the New Belgium Brewing Liquids Center (tap room). At the time, I was an AmeriCorps member serving the Boys & Girls Clubs of Larimer Co, with a living stipend that was below minimum wage. So free tasters of beer was about all the entertainment I could afford at the time.
Georgia’s Wild Heaven brewery busts into the barrel-aged release game with a tequila twist—and a little bit of heat—with the introduction of Height of Civilization. And true to form for this growing Atlanta-area brewery, Wild Heaven delivers.
Bell’s Brewing Co.
Saturn – The Bringer of Old Age
Bourbon Barrel Aged Barleywine
Deep, rich, robust, and smooth. These are all flavors that make up Bell’s fifth Planet Series brew, Saturn, The Bringer of Old Age. A …