I said I would be back with more beers as I “Study Abroad”, and here I am. A man of my word, or at least most of my words. Grab your passport because we’re about to add a few more stamps and add a little extra knowledge to our brain particles. Today we find ourselves flying from Germany, to sample a fantastic Eisbock (what’s an Eisbock? Keep reading and you may or may not find out.), to Italy as we discuss, for a brief moment, nuts (the kind that you eat) and find our manliness with some pink peppercorns, which, aren’t even peppers (I’m so upset about it). Finally, we’ll find ourselves stranded down under as we fight off crocodiles, jellyfish, brown snakes, and the countless other creatures that want to kill/eat us, all in the search of some native Australian hibiscus.
A quick note that should be made, not all of our locations will have all of these products as they are all fairly rare in these parts, but most should have some left. Also, no actual or metaphorical animals were hurt in the creation of this blog post.
So tag along on this beer adventure!
And Now, the Brews
|Schneider Weisse | Eisbock Barrique 2017 | Eisbock aged in Pinot Noir Barrels|
|Welcome to Germany and the land of the Bocks. An Eisbock is a Bockbier made stronger by freezing it. The exact origins of Eisbocks are unknown, but the theory goes that on a cold winter evening in Bavaria, a brewery worker was about to finish up his day when the brewmaster asked him to grab the last barrel outside and bring it in for the night. Instead of bringing it in, he decides to leave it out and deal with it in the morning out of pure laziness. The next morning he arrives to a barrel with broken staves and a lid that has been partially busted off. The brewmaster comes to work not far behind him to see that a barrel of his prized beer had been turned into an icicle and perceived to be ruined. The brewmaster chips away at the ice to discover a sludgy liquid within the ice. As punishment, he forces the worker to drink the sludge, which ended up becoming a much maltier, sweeter drink with high alcohol content, and hence the birth of Eisbock.
Fast forward a couple hundred years and Schneider Weisse has taken an Eisbock and matured it in an American Oak Pinot Noir barrel for 21 months. Pours a dark ruby red with aromas of wine, sweet malts, berries, and booze. This is a fascinating blend of aromas that culminate into similar flavors with added vanilla and oak. Slightly tannic, this beer as many characteristics of a nice wine. Full bodied with some good carbonation. A delicious beer for those who really like wine, and a treat for those who like sweeter beers.
|11.2 oz Bottle | 12% ABV | N/A IBUs|
|Almond 22 | Pink IPA | Italian Pale Ale brewed with Pink Peppercorns|
|Keeping our trek through Europe going, we arrive at green hills of Pescara in Abruzzo, Italy at Birrificio Almond 22. Named after the history of the building this Microbrewery sits in, in 1922 old women worked there peeling almonds to produce the worldwide famous ‘confetti di Sulmona’ [sugared almonds].
Diving into this beer, you can’t go into it with the expectation on an American IPA. An Italian Pale Ale (IPA) on the other hand is a better expectation. This beer was brewed with American hops and pink peppercorns, not actually related to peppers, but dried berries that have a sweet peppery taste, which is where their name comes from. There is a tantalizing nose to this beer, stone fruits, passion fruit, grapefruit, and a hint of peach with a slight pepperiness and hop aromas. The flavor follows closely with some added herbal qualities and a long lasting bitterness you would expect from an IPA. A nice deviation from your typical IPA that would pair nicely with charcuterie.
|12.7 oz Bottle | 6.2% ABV | 45 IBUs|
|Nomad | Rosie’s Summer Punch | Berliner Weisse brewed with Hibiscus|
|Finally, this week we are crossing another pond to Australia where we’re visiting Nomad Brewing. I’ve been reading about these dudes for a little while. Famed brewing protege at Birra Del Borgo in Italy, Brooks Carretta, relocated to Australia to start Nomad with the expectation of never being restricted by fashions and trends and to use Australia’s amazing native ingredients. With the idea of simply brewing a beer that tastes good, Nomad set out to doing something truly unique in Australia.
Enter Rosie’s Summer Punch. A slightly tart Berliner Weisse brewed with native hibiscus petals creating an incredibly refreshing beer. The downside of Nomad being in the Southern Hemisphere is that our seasons are opposite. This beer begs for hot weather to truly experience how refreshing this beer is. Incredibly balanced between sweet and sour, with a touch of herbal notes, almost green tea like. Snag one, if you can, crank your heat to 89° F, turn on your humidifier and enjoy!
|12 oz Can | 3.8% ABV | N/A IBUs|