The beauty of blending barrel-aged beer? You don’t necessarily set out to blend the biggest beer that you’ve ever released, but that’s where the process leads you. Welcome to Wild & Crazy Kids. Here is a brash and forceful beer that marries an exceptionally punchy whisky character with malt artifacts that play more in the black barleywine sandbox than imperial stout. Notes of pecan, marshmallow, cherry cola, dark fruit, and dusty cocoa are more prominent than traditional roasty flavors. Whiskey bookends the beer loudly and clearly: the oak-forward nose and back palate lift of alcohol heat complement underlying hints of vanilla, phenol, and a subtle char.
When we sat down to create this latest release, we intentionally targeted a younger average age of the blend than some of our most recent releases which had been pushing north of 20 months. To wit, we leaned into a cohort of a stout that had just passed the one year mark in wood. It was a hodgepodge stout that pulled heavily from darker crystal malts and was a little light on roast; it came from a mix of expressive barrels including several Parker’s Heritage casks and an especially powerful Elijah Craig 20 year barrel. Hopefully Bourbon nerds will approve of how we’ve repurposed the flavor of these specialty spirits.
We blended in several older casks of oatmeal and milk stout and wheat porter to give the beer a bit more body and tame some of the hotter flavors. This helped us meet our goal of making a beer that is definitely ‘ready to drink now,’ but more than any other blended barrel-aged stout we’ve released yet, this one is prime for additional aging.