Tasting Notes from Nile Zacherle, Mad Fritz Brewer-
"As it became clear that using our malt kiln to dry locally-grown and sourced hops from farmers all over Sonoma and Napa Counties was a much bigger project than we’d suspected, we were inspired to create this beer, evolving from our Local Origins Farmers Ale. Our intent was to secure as many locally-grown hops as we could—to buy them wet, dry them, and then vacuum-pack and freeze them for use throughout the year on our Terroir Series and/or Farmers Ale. The result? An epiphany that brewing for the sake of the hops and the terroir of our growers would be our focus here!
Because hops grown in slightly different microclimates can significantly affect flavor, we decided to begin with 100% Columbus hops on a fairly simple pale ale with some wheat malt (30% of grain bill, Calistoga water and Scarlet 2 Row malt as well as a Belgian yeast). Each bottle is double-stamped—one for the lot code/alc. v/v, and the other for the hop variety and origin). Our first offering, Batch 170909188, is a Belgian like IPA with New England-IPA-like tweaks to it: think hazy and super-foggy, with that signature unfiltered appearance. The Oast House Ale Series marks the beginning of another sub-journey that will take us deep into an exploration of hop terroir and perhaps “old-school” varieties that, with a little help, will yield incredible results. The second bottling, Batch 171118193, is made with Lewelling Spring water (which has a very high minerality), Full Pint from Madras, OR, as well as 30% White Wheat (from Alamosa, CO) and hops from Warm Spring Wind Farms in Occidental (in Sonoma’s West County). Barrel-aged for 2.5 months, it was then dry-hopped with more of the same Cascade Hops from Warm Spring. Mike’s hops are uniquely driven by melon-pear notes, as well as some tropical characteristics that are quite different than our other sites in the same county. A new lot will be released only to members (180123215), with further details to come!" 26.6 fl.oz