Before we delve into Rogue’s newest spirit, you need to understand the labor-intensive process that led up to it. It’s a pretty long process.
The best place to start has to be Rogue Farms, the brewery’s agricultural arm of their operation in Independence, Oregon. It is there the brewery grows the hops and malts used in a plethora of their beers, especially Rolling Thunder Imperial Stout. It only gets more complicated from here.
Before the brewery in Newport, Oregon is busy making an imperial stout, the Rogue distillery had taken some beer mash to distill into white whiskey. That whiskey hasn’t been aging in barrels Rogue simply just ordered from a cooperage. Rogue’s got one of those too. In-house barrel-maker Nate Linquist makes barrels out of Oregon Oak (Quercus garryana) that are then charred before the whiskey is left to age.
Once the whiskey was done, Rolling Thunder was transferred into the wet barrels for barrel-aging for months before bottling. Pretty labor intensive for a barrel-aged imperial stout.
Now, Rogue has gone a step further. Those barrels that once had Rolling Thunder Imperial Stout were filled again with Rogue barrel-aged whiskey to finish in the stout touched barrels for an additional two years.
Farm to brewery. Brewery to distilling. Coopering, charring, aging. Rogue continues to do it all. Now you can get Rolling Thunder Stouted Whiskey for your spirits collection. According to Rogue, this new whiskey release boasts prominent notes of chocolate and coffee that complement the flavors of whiskey-soaked Oregon Oak.
Rogue Rolling Thunder Stouted Whiskey is available in 750-milliliter bottles nationally in limited quantities.
Rogue Rolling Thunder rests in barrels in Newport, Oregon. PIC: Beer Street Journal
The government shutdown is not only taking its toll on the government workers not receiving a paycheck, but on America’s beer industry as well.
Washington D.C. based Atlas Brew Works is opting to do something about it. This week, the brewery filed a lawsuit against the government citing free speech issues dealing with federal label approvals. Without label approvals, Atlas, as well as the nation’s brewers cannot ship new beers out of state. No certificate of label approval, no beer across state lines.
The lawsuit frames the brewery’s labels as a form of free speech, protected by the First Amendment. By extension, the need for a “license” in order to practice free speech is unconstitutional.
Atlas Brew Works is asking the court to step in, in order to get their new seasonal releases into the market on time. Right now the clock is ticking on the brewery’s Precious One, a new apricot IPA. The lack of label approval is keeping this beer in the tanks, unable to be sold.
As of the date of this article, the government shutdown is headed into the 27th day making it the longest in U.S. history. Democrats and the White House remain at odds over granting Trump $5 billion for a wall on the southern border of the country.
Scofflaw Brewing is building a second location in their home city of Atlanta, Georgia.
Selig Enterprises, one of the largest real estate companies announced this morning that Scofflaw Brewing will join The Works, an 80-acre mixed-use development coming to Atlanta’s Upper Westside.
Scofflaw’s home at The Works will span 9,000 square feet and serve as the brewery’s main R&D facility. Expect an open design with a large outdoor area featuring games and friend gathering places. The open plan will be designed to give brewery attendees a more intimate look at the brewing process.
“I have a great relationship with the Selig family and their business. There was no question that creating a Scofflaw R&D brewery and tasting room at The Works was the right strategic decision for our team.” -Scofflaw CEO Matt Shirah.
Scofflaw Brewing’s new location will be built alongside a 16,000 square foot food hall by Robert Montwaid known as Chattahoochee Food Works. The food hall will feature food vendors, entertainment and chef-driven events, a test kitchen and artisanal market shops.
The Works is an 80-acre adaptive mixed-use development Atlanta’s Upper Westside, located off Chattahoochee Ave. near Topgolf Midtown. According to Selig, The Works’ vision includes “distinctive retail and dining, imaginative experiences and inspired gathering areas in an interconnected environment preserving the character of Atlanta’s historic industrial Upper Westside. The multi-phased master plan comprises 350,000 square feet of retail and entertainment, 500,000 square feet of office space, 500 residences, 200 hotel rooms and 13 acres of green space.”
Phase One, 27 acres, is currently under construction and scheduled for opening in early 2020.
At the 2018 Firestone Walker Invitational, Creature Comfort’s Adam Beauchamp was having a beer with Russian River’s Vinnie Cilurzo. Beauchamp mentioned Creature Comfort’s ‘Get Comfortable’ Campaign, their annual community outreach program. Creature Comforts helped raise funds to help folks affected by the 2017 Sonoma fires, so Cilurzo couldn’t wait to get involved.
The two breweries collaborated on an India pale ale, brewed with Strata, Amarillo, Comet, and Pahto hops. “Get Comfortable IPA” finishes at 7.2% alcohol by volume.
This year, Creature Comforts has chosen the following nonprofits to benefit from the funds raised from sales of the collaboration: Action Ministries, Advantage Behavioral Health, The Ark, Athens Community Council on Aging, Bigger Vision, Chess & Community, College Factory, Family Connection-Communities in Schools, and Mercy Health Center. These nine non-profits will be highlighted throughout the 2019 Get Comfortable campaign season, which wraps up in November.
Creature Comforts Russian River Get Comfortable IPA is available in 16-ounce cans and draft throughout the duration of the campaign.
This Friday, America’s oldest brewery will release a beer that’s a little different from the famed Amber Lager. YuenglingBourbon Barrel Reserve is coming to Pottsville, Pennsylvania.
Prior to modern refrigeration, brewers of the world used cold caves to ferment beer at colder temperatures. Incidentally, Yuengling has their own hand-dug caves that were in heavy use in the 1800s. It is there that the brewery has been resting a Marzen-style beer in bourbon barrels for 120 days prior to its release.
As much as this release might excite the hardcore Yuengling fans, Bourbon Barrel Reserve is not only draft-only but solely available at the Pottsville taproom on January 11th at 5 pm.