While all the delicious ingredients we add play an intricate roll in the flavors and aromas of the final product, Hops have always had a soft spot in our hearts. I think it’s safe to say that goes for most West Coast Brewers. We love the stuff, can’t get enough of it as a matter of fact. It seems like there is always some new IPA style on the market and we will dry hop just about anything. That got us thinking about how we can make the beer at BHBC even more unique by offering some choices with local, fresh ingredients.
We are happy to announce the first year harvest of our hops! We planted Cascade, Chinook, Amalia and Nugget hop varietals. They were harvested this morning and are drying and curing as you read this. Look forward to a special brew from this harvest and many more come as we expand this project! We wanted to share some of the pictures from our harvest day and thank all the Beer Society members who came out to lend us a hand… It probably helps that we bribed them with free beer… Hannah, pictured below, was bribed with juice boxes, which everyone agreed, were delicious.
Last week saw a new addition to the BarrelHouse family, a pristine French Oak Foeder from a local winery. We are very excited, and you should be too, because this rare vessel will help expand our sour and wild ales projects which are headed by our Lead Brewer, Mathew Jacobs. The 2,000 gallon Foeder has long held Red Zinfandel and Cabernet wines, imparting a bright and floral red wine acidity to the 100% oak surface. These characteristics will pass onto each beer we brew for this awesome tank, so keep an eye out for what’s to come!
Here’s our version of ‘How to move a 2000 gallon oak barrel in 3 easy steps.’
Step 1: Loader’ up! Straps, next to dogs and cold beers, are a mans best friend…
Step 2: Don’t drop it!
Step 3: Bask in its glory…
Ahhh, the glorious side of hand crafting well made beer. Floor sealer. Okay maybe not glorious, but it is integral to the process. Once again, we needed and wanted to do as much as we could ourselves. We enlisted help from a local talent to help us figure it out. Floors check!
Beautiful! Our fermenters, bright tank, and cold liquor tank are being finished up as you read. Goosebumps.
After much research early in the game, the number one bit of advice from most breweries was not to start too small. It’s hard enough trying to make ends meet in the beginning without the looming need to expand relatively quickly after starting. We took their advice and decided to start a little bigger and grow into them. This way we can focus 100% on bringing all of our beer crazed friends new and exciting beers to enjoy!
Slated to arrive mid-September. Wait, that’s this month?! Okay slated to arrive in the upcoming weeks. It’s game time at BarrelHouse Brewing!
It’s really important for us to stay connected with everyone in our community, especially local brewers. Jason has been part of the San Luis Obispo Brewers (SLOBs) since college and I was excited to connect with them as soon as I moved up. It didn’t take long for me to realize this group was stupid. Stupid in a ridiculously amazing way! They welcomed us with opened bottles of some of the best brews I’ve ever tasted. Not to mention a wealth of knowledge.
The nucleus of this outgoing club is Doc’s Cellar in San Luis Obispo. Sure, we could have easily purchased all of our grains, hops, yeast and other pilot brewing goodies from any number of online sources. But, we have to support our local guys and we just love spending hours in there talking ‘shop’. Thanks to George and the rest of the crew for always taking great care of us.
One of the members sent an email out letting everyone know he had some fresh wet hops. Nugget and Chinook. After a couple days I jumped on it. I sent Michael B an email and we planned to meet. I figured he had a couple bags full. To my surprise he had full bines with a hearty amount of fresh hops. Yea! We harvested and they went straight to the brewery where our wonderful wives spent a few hours removing the flowers. Oh yea, west coast pale ale with fresh wet hops here we come!