Meet Nick Ison, barrel program lead, and Jeff White, innovation brewer, at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. They are here to give us a tour of the famed craft brewery’s Chico, Calif. barrel room.
“I like to think the point of putting beer into barrels is not to age it. It’s to allow it to mature,” introduces Ison in the video above.
Let’s walk the barrel rows. Ah! How about we start off with a Narwhal Imperial Stout that’s been maturing in its third barrel (a port barrel)? Mmm … just a year of barrel-aging helps transform that bitter chocolate flavor profile to sweet chocolate splendor. What’s next? A four-year-old Bigfoot barley wine? Damn, that looks mighty fine, but watching Ison and then White thoroughly enjoy themselves sampling super rare barrel-aged brews is a bit torturous. They seem like cool dudes, but maybe quit hogging all the samples.
For an extensive overview of Sierra Nevada’s barrel-aging history, do click on this link. Alright, off to buy some Narwhal.