Get to Know: Touch of Brett Old Tom

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Get to Know: Touch of Brett Old Tom

This weekend is our May release, and with that it’s time to share details on the final beer coming for spring!

When we brewed Touch of Brett: Galaxy , most of the batch went into neutral French Oak barrels to age, but we took a small portion of that batch and barreled it down into Old Tom gin barrels for nearly nine months.

The beer is the same dry French-style saison primarily fermented with a blend of Brettanomyces as is usual for the Touch of Brett series, but it differs from Touch of Brett: Galaxy in the flavors of citrus, juniper and pepper-like notes that it picked up from the barrels. The beer finishes crisp and dry with a great aroma of the gin botanicals.

Touch of Brett: Old Tom is our club only beer for the quarter, meaning we only have the small batch available for purchase in bottles to our Blender’s Circle members. If you want to get your hands on this beer, it’s not too late to sign up for our membership and get your hands on all five releases this time around!

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Get to Know: Common Nectar

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Get to Know: Common Nectar

Last quarter we unveiled a small batch collaboration with The Commons brewery out of Portland, Friend in Commons. This quarter, we’re excited to share the second half of that collaboration! The first of the two-part series was a tart farmhouse ale that showcased a good expression of brett, acid and oak. For the second blend, Common Nectar, we took the remainder of the barrels and let them mature on 1 lb/gal. of locally grown whole nectarines from Detering Orchards.

The nectarine presence is at the forefront of this mixed-culture ale — aromatic and juicy stone fruit notes balance out the firm acidity. Despite a perceived medium-full body sweetness from the nectarine refermentation, Common Nectar finishes crisp and dry. 

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Spring Release 2019!

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Spring Release 2019!

The weekend of May 18-19th, we will be releasing five new spring beers and hosting a two day release event for our membership at the tasting room! This release we’ll be introducing two new takes on a dry-hopped favorite, another great collaboration, and a new addition to our terroir series. Here’s what’s on the lineup for May:  

  • Terroir: Chardonnay – Continuing our series of wine grape-matured farmhouse ales, this bright golden-colored beer underwent a second fermentation on Chardonnay juice from Iris Vineyards and has notes of peach, honey and tropical fruits with subtle oak on the finish. It ends with medium acidity intertwined with a soft citrus peel note.

  • Common Nectar – Our second collaboration blend with The Commons Brewery was matured on locally grown, whole Yellow Nectarines from Detering Orchards. Aromatic and juicy stone fruit notes balance the firm acidity of this mixed-culture ale. Despite a perceived medium-full body sweetness from the nectarine refermentation, Common Nectar finishes crisp and dry.

  • Kind of Blue – Our light-bodied Belgian ale was matured on two varieties of blueberries grown next door at King Estate, yielding a deep magenta color and bursting berry aroma. The oak aging layers in hints of vanilla and dry tannic notes while the secondary berry fermentation adds a firm acidity and complexity that will continue to develop and evolve over time.

  • Touch of Brett: Galaxy – This dry French-style saison was primary fermented with a blend of Brettanomyces yeasts, lending tropical fruit and spicy aromas. After aging, it was dry-hopped liberally with Galaxy hops, adding juicy layers of pineapple, peach and passionfruit. Join us on the journey as the hops and Brettanomyces yeast evolve together over time.

  • Touch of Brett: Old Tom — This dry French-style saison was primary fermented with a blend of Brettanomyces yeasts and then matured in Old Tom Gin barrels for nearly 9 months. After aging, it was dry-hopped with Galaxy hops, layering aromas of passionfruit and ripe pineapple over barrel-induced flavors of citrus and juniper.

With the spring release, we are hosting our second Blender’s Circle release dinner for our membership at the tasting room the evening of May 17th. The dinner will feature six beers and  five courses, and acts as an opportunity for our club members to pick up their May shipment early. More details on the menu coming soon!

New this quarter, we have extended our release to be a two day event! From 1-6pm on May 18th and 19th, we will have tastings of each of the new beers paired with delicious small bites and live music. Beers will also be released online to our mailing list a few weeks prior to the event, and the only way to get into the party without being a member is to order at least 6 bottles from the presale. Remaining inventory will be released in our tasting room and to our accounts the following week.  

Stay tuned for our release email coming the week of April 28th, and keep checking back here for the run down on each of these new beers!

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Get to Know: Friend in Commons

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Get to Know: Friend in Commons

For the fourth and final beer of this release we are very excited to announce the first part of our collaboration with The Commons! Back in April of 2017 Matt and I took our box truck on the road to brew with Sean, Sam, Mike and crew at the Commons in Portland. The idea of the collaboration was to make a rustic farmhouse ale where we would take half the wort and ferment it with our brettanomyces in our cellar and they would ferment their half in their cellar. This would yield us two beers with an expression of the terroir of each of our cellars. While we didn't get the chance to fully execute this plan we were able to bring all the barrels down to our cellar when the Commons closed. After a lengthy maturation time in our cellar we invited Mike down to come up with a couple of blends using the beer from the collaboration. This is the first and smaller of the two blends.

Friend in Commons is made up of our three favorite barrels from the batch that had a great expression of brett, acid and oak. We then dry-hopped the blend with citra to really bring out the citrus notes in the beer. The rest of the barrels were given a healthy dose of fresh nectarines and will be ready for our next release in May.

Cheers!

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Get to Know: Maestro

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Get to Know: Maestro

maes • tro

/’mīstrō/
noun

            a distinguished musician, especially a conductor of classical styles

In the beer world, it’s hard to find a style more classic than a barleywine. We’re all for respecting the classics here at Alesong, and that’s why with this release we are offering a new version of a beer we first released a couple of years ago: Maestro, our bourbon-barrel aged Barleywine. Deriving their name from a higher than average alcohol content (not dissimilar to that of wine), Barleywines have earned a place as the dean of beer styles. The style originated in England, and the first commercially-named example was packaged by the famous Bass & Co in 1903. Strong, malty and complex, Barleywines tend to age very well.  In fact, many of these robust ales were originally aged in wooden casks like we do at Alesong, lending to their unique complexities.

British Barleywines are typically very malty sweet, while American versions, as is typical with most US styles, become very hoppy and often lean toward bitter.  This hop character, while almost Double IPA-like at first, ages out over time to a complex balancing act.  So, where does Maestro fall on the British vs American Barleywine Spectrum? We're pretty much settled into the middle.  We add enough hops for balance, and to make sure the beer doesn't overwhelm with sweetness,  but really want the malt to be the star of the show.  After aging in Heaven Hill bourbon barrels for nearly a year, any modest amounts of hops we have added are fairly faded. 

In the barrel, Maestro picked up aromas of toffee, vanilla and spice which play well over the sweet, caramel-like malt flavors. This full-bodied ale is certainly big enough to keep you warm through winter’s bitter end.

Cheers!

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