Wild Ballyhoura: The Legend of the Oak King & the Holly King

Last year was the first time we released our barrel-aged beers in 750ml bottles with the Dukes of Burgundy series. For 2017, we’re bringing out a new duo of 750ml bottles, The Oak King and The Holly King, which will be part of our new Wild Ballyhoura Series. Wild Ballyhoura Series We’ve got a new pet at the brewery and his name is Brett. This wild yeast is a curious and mischievous little creature and we recently introduced him to our oak barrel-aged beers. There’s a whole shipping container of French oak barrels, formerly used for pinot noir and chardonnay, tucked away in a corner where we can age our very specially brewed ales. While they’re sitting there, we bring Brett to the party. Wild yeasts equals wild flavours; we hope they play nice. His full name is Brettanomyces Clausenii, or Brett C, the earliest strain of brett to be classified by a chap investigating funky flavours in British breweries (Brettanomyces = British fungus). We can assume that all pre-modern beer would have picked up brett in storage over time; by playing with Brett C, we’re getting a good indication of how beer brewed and aged in the Ballyhouras, over one hundred years, ago would have tasted. Naturally adventurous. It’s the Eight Degrees way. These beers are due to be released in the next few weeks – brett can’t be hurried and we’re waiting on the brewers to give us the thumbs up so that we can put these beauties into bottles. The Legend of the Oak King & the Holly King The Holly King Imperial Stout Aged in French oak with Brettanomyces C ABV 9.5% In Celtic mythology, the Oak King and the Holly King were warrior twins, engaged in a never-ending fight for supremacy. At Midwinter the Holly King –

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