16 November 2016
PORTLAND, OR. – Cascade Brewing, a leading producer of sour beer, recently saw its Noyaux named by Men’s Journal as one of the Top 100 Beers in the World. Noting that Cascade has become a place of pilgrimage for sourheads, the article called out Noyaux as Cascade’s “crème de la crème.”
Noyaux (pronounced noy-OH) is a blend of sour blond ales aged in white wine barrels for up to 24 months with fresh raspberries and apricot noyaux. It features a complex bouquet of raspberry fruit, rose petals, toasted almonds and soft perfume notes.
Barrels and blending are a very important part of the brewing process at Cascade Brewing and what separates it from other sour beer producers; mainly the ones that brew primarily “kettle sours,” which do not utilize any oak barrel aging. Cascade Brewing beers age for a minimum of 12 months in oak; some age up to two years.
On Nov. 4, Cascade Brewing was honored to have Douglas Rennie, a fourth generation Master Cooper, visit its facility. Rennie, who formerly hailed from Glasgow, Scotland, and now resides in Napa, Calif., is the Master Cooper for world-renowned barrel maker Seguin Moreau.
Accompanied by the Pacific Northwest Sales Territory Manager Adam Schultz, the two spent more than two hours with Cascade’s cellar and brewery team discussing the finer points of the barrel process and giving a hands-on demonstration of how to properly care for the casks.
Against the background of Cascade’s 1,500+ sour beer-filled oak barrels, Rennie used his tools ever so delicately to show the team the best way to care for its treasured oaks. He informed them that the wood used in the French Oak casks come from trees that are a minimum of 150 years old; more than 60 percent of Cascade’s barrels are French Oak, including the nine foudres.
“We greatly appreciated Mr. Rennie’s time at Cascade,” stated Tim Larrance, vice president of sales and marketing for Cascade Brewing. “We know that his time spent with our team will benefit us greatly in helping use our oak barrels to make the best sour beer around.”