Last week’s delivery wasn’t as spectacular as the prior one, but it did bring in some really great beer. Well, I’ve been told they’re great, at least. I’ve had a cold for the past week and my senses of smell and taste are pretty useless. Oh well, at least I’ve got something to look forward to!
For those of you who don’t already know about the Rainbow Project, let’s start there. Basically, it started a few years back as the colorful, collaborative brainchild of then head brewer of Siren, Ryan Witter-Merithew. (More from him later…) This year’s event saw seven UK breweries teamed up with seven New Zealand breweries and each pair produced a collaborative beer based on their assigned color of the rainbow. There’s not a lot of stock floating around outside of the breweries and the official boxes that hold one of each beer, so I’m feeling pretty lucky to have landed four of the seven for the shop – the yellow, green, blue and indigo. The folks at Magic Rock have put together a great page describing each beer in depth, so check that out if you’re curious. Due to limited stock, I’ve had to put a limit of one per person on The Upside Down, Kai-Moana Gose and Black & Blue for now. There’s plenty of the Blacklight Banana from Siren, though.
Speaking of Siren, the most exciting beer in this delivery for me is their Barrel Aged Caribbean Chocolate Cake stout. For those of you who had the standard, non-barrel aged version last year, this beer will need no introduction and you’ve probably already started making your way down here to get it. For those of you who haven’t tried the original, there’s no time like the present to make up for that. It’s a decadent chocolate stout whirled around with some Cyprus wood in Siren’s spinbot and now its been laid down in bourbon barrels for a year. I’ve got a pile of bottles saved for customers who came in over the weekend and after having the one they bought, decided they need more of this in their lives.
Remember that name I mentioned earlier – Ryan Witter-Merithew? He now works at the world renowned Hill Farmstead Brewery in Vermont. Yeah, THAT Hill Farmstead. Operating under the guise of Casita Cerveceria, he recently teamed up with his old coworkers at Siren and buddy Logan Plant of Beavertown to make Amigos Britanicos over in Vermont. The resulting beer is a farmhouse ale with lime, honey and Santa Fe Grande chiles. Siren has now recreated the beer over here and packaged in their own branding.
I finally got my hands on some of the new cans being pumped out of Stone Brewing Co‘s new operation in Berlin. With their new brewery being so much closer than California, we’re sure to see lots of fresher beer from one of the stalwarts of American brewing. This week we’ve got the genre-defining IPA, Cali-Belgique IPA, Go To IPA, Ruination and Arrogant Bastard. Their closer proximity also means that prices on most of these are better than they were when they’ve been transported from the USA.
There was also a fresh restocking of the Wild Beer range, which now comprises twelve varieties! Sleeping Lemons regular strength and Sleeping Lemons Export are both back, as is Millionaire, Modus Operandi, Ninkasi and Shnoodlepip. The latter is now housed in a big 750ml bottle with a wax-dipped top. The other new arrival is Gazillionaire in 750’s itself. Don’t be mistaken, this isn’t a bigger version of Millionaire. No, it’s a totally new beer – a white stout with vanilla and cardamom. Wild, huh?
The gluten-free range doubled in size this week with the addition of ToØl’s Totem Pale, a low-strength pale ale. Yes, that does mean there are only two gluten-free beers in the shop, but that’s better than zero.
And coming back after a very long absence is Eldon, the imperial stout from Thornbridge.