Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Smoked American Brown aged in Rye Barrels

James E. Pepper Smoked American Brown Ale....$6.49 / 12oz

Barrel Aged in Rye Barrels
Rated 99/100 RateBeer
Like most whiskey aficionados, we also love a great beer. And in particular, we became very fond of barrel-aged beers, which from time to time had been aged in our whiskey barrels! So we decided to have some fun and make our own beer. We partnered with a great craft brewery (the Beltway Brewing Co. in Sterling, VA) and began working with their master brewer to create a flavor profile that would develop best in barrels that previously held our award winning James E. Pepper "1776" Rye Whiskey. The goal was to create a rich and flavorful barrel-aged beer, but also one that was a bit more drinkable than some of the heavier barrel-aged porters and stouts in the market - a barrel-aged beer that could be enjoyed year round and that pairs well with a glass of rye whiskey.

No more than 30 days after our whiskey barrels are dumped in Kentucky, they are at the brewery being filled with beer. This ensures that every batch gets a rich Rye whiskey finish and notes of toffee, chocolate, oak and vanilla. Barrels are not filled with water for 24-48 hours to seal them, as many brewers are forced to do with barrels that have been left to dry out for too long (an unfortunate process that also removes some of the great whiskey flavor left in barrels). Because we buy barrels from the cooper to age our whiskey, and then we monitor that maturation process over the years until we bottle our whiskey, we have complete control over the age and type of barrels we use. We think that is a big reason why this beer has come out with such uniquely rich flavor and taste. Cheers!


Anonymous said...

I've been wanting to try this one for a while now and wasn't sure when, if ever, it would hit our market. I am so thankful for your commitment to operating a first class blog that's updated so frequently; what a killer resource for beer geeks! Thanks for doing things right. Also, many thanks for stocking the Ballwin store with some of these gems.

Paul Hayden said...

Thank you so very much for the kind words. It does really mean a lot to us! And thank you for supporting our stores and reading our blog.