17 January 2017
From New Braunfels:
Our sour bitch has finally emerged from her barrel slumber.
Black Fury 2017
Black Fury is the most aggressively sour beer we craft. Brewed as our farmhouse dunkelweizen, Schwartz, with 4 malts and a distinctive chocolate palate, we age Black Fury in small, 15 gallon barrels for 9-10 months. The smaller barrels encourage a quicker oxygen uptake. Once our mixed culture fermentation is complete the acetobacter in the beer metabolizes with the oxygen and creates a distinctive acedic vinegar taste that lends a depth to this beer.
This year we started with 24 barrels to blend. We selected barrels that had a pleasant mix of tart, oak and funk. Some barrels exhibited the acedic notes more than others and for 2017 we wanted the final blend to balance this brightly sour note so we used these barrels sparingly.
If you've tasted this beer before, you'll notice a distinct smoothness to this release. This is Head Brewer Nathan's first barrel project to preside over and his hand and palate are very evident in the final blend.
In the end, we've blended together 250 gallons of finished beer into what we feel is a distinctive black sour creation that is complex, dynamic and unique.
For our 2017 release we'll have 80 cases of 500ml bottles and 10 kegs to share at the last week of January. We've also got a few 2016 kegs that we'll be using for vertical tappings.
White wine lees in a bright, beautiful beer
Very Seldom Naughty
Very Seldom Naughty is a tart, funky wine-forward beer with a beautiful aroma and drinkability. The brew starts with Blondine, our 85% wheat farmhouse hefeweizen. We age a small portion of VSN in barrels with white wine lees from our wine buddies up in the Hill Country. The lees add microbiology to our mixed culture so this beer exhibits different fermentation esters not present in our other crafts. The flavor of the wine adds a mouthfeel and complexity that give this farmhouse beer a magnificent drinkability that screams for food pairing.
Blend2 is the first to leave the brewery as our first release sold out in-house last summer. For this release we used a blend of white wine lees from Hilmy Cellars focusing on Viognier and Chenin Blanc. 30 gallons were aged in barrel with the lees for 4 months. Late last month those barrels were transferred to our brite tank, 35 more gallons of lees were added with a few hundred gallons of Blondine. Final fermentation blended the flavors and dried the beer out. It lasted another 2 1/2 weeks before we filled kegs and bottles the first week of January 2017.
Blend2 consists of 80 cases of 750ml bottles and 15 kegs. Draft will be available the second week of January and bottles the last week.
Bier No.217 is a blend of 80% Blondine and 20% Uber refermented in oak with brown sugar. Aging time is around 8-10 months (9 months for this release) after which we transfer the beer to a brite tank and add juniper berries for 10 days before packaging.
The first release of Bier No.217 was a few years ago and was, at the time, was the first beer we ever blended. Blending is a concept we felt we needed to get better at to really understand and excel with our barrel-aged and farmhouse beers. Since then our palates have evolved alongside our mixed culture of local yeasts and bacterias and we've blended the majority of our beers with old and new beer, first and third presses off fruit and, in the case of this Blend3 of Bier No.217, completely different brews.
Bier No.217 was originally inspired by the room number in which that deep evil resided in The Shining and Dr. Sleep. When Kelly first went down the rabbit hole of mixed fermentations this beer was the 4th such experiment. Once he put the ingredients in the fermenter and added our feral mixed culture, there was a certain fear interwoven with excitement and a childish wonderment at what would emerge. During the months of secondary fermentation, Kelly picked up the book Dr. Sleep and that brooding evil maniacally reminded him of what he might find when he opened the door to this fermentation. No such evil manifested itself but the name stuck as a reminder of that passionate mix of emotions that barrel-aging and extended fermentations evokes.
We hope you'll enjoy Blend3 as much as we have. On paper the beer reads like a complex, flavor bomb of acidity and oak. In your glass, it drinks like a smooth malty, tart beer with a hint of juniper spice. The amber color of the pour is unique for us here at NBBCo as 95% of our beer is either light or black. The finish is clean and the palate is crisp-a hallmark of our signature flavor.
For our 2017 release we'll have 40 cases of 500ml bottles and 15 kegs to share on February 17.