It's that dark time of year when gorging on eggnog and figgy pudding gives way to long days at the office and unwanted resolutions. What were our New Years resolutions, you ask? For starters, we plan to master the dance from the 'Gangnam Style' music video. Secondly, we plan to drink locally and seasonally. We're in that unique window when the temperatures still chill to the bone, yet the skies are clear and blue. This week's featured brew will help you straddle the seasonal line with bright, palate-lifting flavors juxtaposed with a warming 8% ABV.
In addition to being delicious, this week's beer is particularly rare (did your beer geek antenna just perk up?). For a while now, the Healthy Spirits shop has been commissioning their own proprietary single barrel bourbons, and approaching local breweries to fill them with beer once they've been emptied. The newest iteration of the series comes from Triple Voodoo Brewing, who have filled a Buffalo Trace single barrel with their Inception beer.
The base beer is a take on a classic Belgian Triple, with a bright orange hue, fluffy white head and fruity yeast character. The recipe takes a uniquely California twist with the addition of citrusy west coast hops, which brighten the aroma and flavor. The barrel aging adds a nice kiss of vanilla and a sharp, woody character. A portion of fresh beer was blended with the barrel-aged batch to re-introduce a fresh, hoppy note to the beer. The spirit barrel-aging doesn't overwhelm the base beer, but plays a supporting role that adds complexity to the finished product.
Enjoy this brew with a chunk of triple cream brie or a fresh crab dinner. At only 432 bottles produced, don't expect the beer to last forever. It can only be purchased at Healthy Spirits (2299 15th St. at Castro St.), and is guaranteed to be one of your most delicious New Year's resolutions.