Denver, CO – February 20th, 2014 – Breckenridge Brewery debuted Barleywine Batch #1 at the Vail Big Beers, Belgians and Barleywines Festival in January. Batch #1, Breckenridge Brewery’s first barley wine, will be released to the public in a limited run of 22 oz., wax-topped bottles. Cold conditioned for three months and barrel-aged in fresh American Oak barrels for another six, this beer comes in at 10.1% ABV. It has an aromatic complexity resembling that of molasses and ripened black cherries, and a robust profile that blends a spectrum of flavors including sweet malts, dark fruits, oak, and esters.
On Saturday, March 15th, bottles of Batch #1 will become available for purchase at Breckenridge Brewery’s production brewery in Denver. Todd Usry, Breckenridge Brewery’s Brewmaster and Director of Brewing Operations, will be at the Batch #1 Bottle Release to mingle with patrons and autograph bottles. Also in attendance will be American Craft Beer Radio remote hosting their show live on ESPN Radio from the Batch #1 Release.
Usry was first inspired to brew a barley wine while at the Big Beers, Belgians and Barleywines Festival in Vail. He reached out to his friend and fellow classmate, Fal Allen, Brewmaster for Anderson Valley Brewing Company. He and Usry have been friends since their school days at the Siebel Institute of Technology and World Brewing Academy. Allen, co-author of Barley Wine: History, Brewing Techniques, Recipes, was instrumental as an adviser with whom Usry conferred during the development of Batch #1. “I wanted to create a classic barley wine,” explains Usry. “I was seeking an outside perspective and couldn’t think of anyone better than Fal who had a true understanding for what the style is supposed to be.”
Like that of its January birthstone, Barleywine Batch #1 has the appearance of Garnet, with deep reds and dark mahoganies comprising its color. Sweet caramel malt notes are the first to land the palate, followed by a rich, dark fruit dulcitude and slight tartness that balance well with a pleasant nuance from the fresh oak barrels. As the flavors set in, there is a subtle spreading warmth attributed to the alcohol.
Barleywine will become an annual release for Breckenridge Brewery. Each Batch, however, will incorporate a new imaginative twist on the recipe. It will be unveiled at Big Beers, Belgians, and Barleywines year after year, followed by a limited bottle release at the brewery with availability in select markets.