#BarrelAgedBeer – PorchDrinking.com
Two hundred breweries from around the country will come to Chicago on Nov 8-9 and offer guests a wide variety of wall-to-wall, remarkable barrel-aged beers. However, with an abundance of wilds, sours and a host of bourbon, rum and wine barrel-aged brews, the Festival of Barrel Aged Beers (FoBAB) tests both one’s liver and belly.
So, how do you survive? How can you avoid getting so inebriated you can’t taste the beer…or walk? How do you avoid having your stomach curdle? For that matter, how do you enjoy FoBAB fully?
Don’t worry; we have a plan.
It was the best of sours, it was the best of sours. My apologies to Mr. Dickens, but the tale of these two sours from two different breweries located in two different regions, and enjoying two different histories, is a joyful one. So, do you prefer California or Colorado? Kettle or Barrel? Belgium or Germany? It doesn’t matter. You can have whatever you want because beers like these exemplify how we as craft beer fans are indeed living in the best of times.
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.
August 5, 2017 marks 24 years of brewing for Avery Brewing. To commemorate the achievement, Avery released Twenty Four Imperial IPA — a stellar beer, to be sure. But, the biggest news emerging from the Boulder-based brewery in 2017 involved its decision to substantially alter the beer portfolio by saying goodbye to old standbys and instead concentrating more on barrel aging. Hence, it behooved us at PorchDrinking to look at one of its latest Botanical & Barrel releases, Ginger Sour, while simultaneously raising our pint glasses and exclaiming, “Happy Anniversary, Avery!”
ABV: 11.8 | IBU: 29
Oh, how I love finding a big, bold, limited release beer from a large craft brewery with a great reputation. Behold my excitement when I reached into my dwindling stash of “cellar” beers and pulled out the Boulevard Brewing Rye-On-Rye X – Sazerac from their acclaimed Smokestack Series!
ABV: 9.9% | IBU: 33
Funky doesn’t begin to describe Odell Brewing Elephunk Imperial Wild IPA. This delicious boozy palette puncher is indeed a wild ride. It’s weird. It’s complex. It’s funky with a “p-h.” Yep, it’s PHunky.
Noon Whistle Brewing | Photo Credit: Mathew Powers
Suburban Chicago’s Noon Whistle Brewing is located in an old strip mall and barely visible from the main road; a location unlikely to garner a passing grade in a Business 101 class. Makes no matter because in the craft beer world, it’s not location, location, location that’s essential; it’s libation, fermentation, innovation.
The beer emerging from Noon Whistle Brewing pulls throngs of thirsty patrons through its doors. And that is why when I arrived a few minutes after the noon hour on a Friday — the first of two days dedicated for its two-year anniversary — I was far from the only person ready to indulge in a parade of special releases. By the time I left that night, the place was packed.
As Founders Brewing Company enters its 20th year of brewing, they have announced the release of the first beer from their 2017 Barrel-Aged Series. Frootwood is a cherry ale aged in oak barrels that have previously held both bourbon and …
I don’t mean to be dramatic, but I think they’ve named this beer wrong. With a name like, “Drama Queen”, you’d expect this 8.3% barrel-aged saison to be too boozy, quick to fly off the handle with overly pronounced flavors. No, she is far too balanced to be called a drama queen.
The world’s largest barrel-aged beer competition, held at the Festival of Barrel Aged Beer (FoBAB) in Chicago, is underway. However, the FoBAB 2016 awards are now official, and our Chicago/Midwest editor, Mike Zoeller was there. Here are the results — congrats to all the winners!