Avery Brewing Announces Barrel Aged Series
Posted: April 07, 2009
Avery Brewing is joining the barrel aging trend, and has announced a new Barrel-Aged series. The first beer in the series, Brabant, is now available. Brabant is a Barrel-Aged American Wild Ale, is fermented with two strains of wild yeast (brettanomyces), then aged for eight months in zinfandel barrels. If you don't think that description sounds unique, there might be something wrong with you. According to Avery's website, Brabant was released in "limited quantities" to "select states around the country and should be appearing on the shelf at a few lucky stores this week." I guess Binny's is one of the lucky few to receive Brabant. The beer poured an unexpected black color with some deep purple hues. The nose has an overwhelming amount of funk going on . The main aromas are loads of brettanomyces and zinfandel from the barrels. Lost of dark fruits were also detectable. The smell threw me for a loop as Brabant almost smells like wine as opposed to beer. To me the flavor of Brabant was similar to the smell of the beer. Boat loads of brettanomyces are prominent, which I admit turned me off a bit, but I am somewhat of a hop- head so what do you expect? The unique zinfandel flavor was, well, unique, and coincided with a sweet and sour taste that is reminiscent of a Flemish Red. Dark fruits were again detectable, but again took a back seat to the brettanomyces and zinfandel. I think this beer would be stellar with some age, and would hold up nicely at 9.3% ABV. Overall I can't say that this is one of my favorites from Avery, but it is worth a shot due to it's uniqueness and extremity. I like what Avery is doing with their barrel aging series; maybe the next beer in the series will be a different style or aged in a different type of barrel. Another bourbon barrel stout from a top notch brewery like Avery would be a pleasant surprise. If anyone out there has endeavored Brabant, I'd like to hear about it.