UTICA, N.Y. — The beer has been brewed and the golden tickets have been hidden. The F.X. Matt Brewery’s new Saranac 12 Beers of Winter variety package is now available, featuring four brand-new beers, two encore beers and a limited number of Golden Tickets for craft beer enthusiasts to take over the brewery for a night.
In the winter variety package, beer drinkers may find a Saranac Big Moose Ale wrapped in a Golden Ticket and big red bow, indicating they’ve won an Ultimate Brewery Tour and VIP trip for themselves and a guest. During the trip, which will be held next fall, Nick and Fred Matt, owners of the F.X. Matt Brewing Co. — the second oldest family-owned brewery in the U.S. and New York’s oldest brewery — will reveal the year’s new winter beers and take guests through a magical journey, chock full of experiences only a lucky few will ever have, including:
- A behind-the-scenes tour led by the Matts through the brewery
- Visiting the private cellar, secret beer lab, official tasting room and bottling floor
- Being the first to taste-test new beers
- Pouring beers straight from the aging tanks
- Exclusive five-course beer-pairing dinner with the Matts
- Overnight accommodations at Hotel Utica
- And many other magical surprises!
“This is one of our favorite times of year at the brewery for many reasons,” said Fred Matt, president of F.X. Matt Brewing Co. and fourth-generation family member. “We love bringing our fans to the brewery for an exclusive VIP experience, and the 12 Beers of Winter variety package always proves to be an eclectic and flavorful mix of brews perfect for the cold weather and holidays. It’s the only holiday variety pack on store shelves that includes six seasonal offerings!”
In addition to finding a Golden Ticket in a Saranac 12 Beers of Winter variety package, consumers can also enter for a chance to win by joining Club Saranac, scanning the QR codes found on signage in local bars and retail locations, visiting the Saranac website or texting SARANAC to 24587.
Last year’s winners, whose stories and photographs are featured on the Saranac website, celebrated the 2012 Golden Ticket event on Nov. 3. Pictures of the event are also posted on the website and the Saranac Facebook page.
This year’s exclusive Golden Ticket event featured beers from the new 12 Beers of Winter variety package, including the four new seasonal beers: 4059’ Porter, Belgian Pale Ale, Black Bear Bock and Red India Pale Ale (IPA).
- The Saranac 4059’ Porter, named for Porter Mountain in the Adirondacks, is an English-style beer that dates back to the 1720s. This porter features a strong, robust flavor and full body. Saranac 4059’ Porter pairs well with dark chocolate, pork tenderloin, blackened fish and Gruy├¿re cheese.
- Saranac Belgian Pale Ale uses Amarillo hops that were accidentally discovered growing wild in a hop yard in Washington State; a Dutch wheat malt, lending a light spicy and grainy kick; and a unique yeast from Belgium. This brew pairs well with roasted chicken, fruit and soft cheeses, such as brie.
- The new Saranac Black Bear Bock is a tribute to the F.X. Matt Brewery’s German roots. This traditional-style bock dates back to the 14th century and was traditionally brewed to celebrate holidays in Germany. Beer drinkers around the world still celebrate the “Blessing of the Bock” events. Historically, because of its sweet and malty character, bock has been called “liquid bread” and monks drank it during long fasts. The Saranac Black Bear Bock is best paired with duck, German chocolate cake and limburger cheese.
- A new favorite from the brewery is the Saranac Red IPA, which uses dark English caramel malt to give it a deep amber color for a new twist on the traditional IPA. The brewery uses four hop blends—all from the U.S.—to give it the flavor and aroma. Saranac Red IPA, one of the first in this new variation of the industry’s IPA style, tastes best when paired with curry dishes or pad thai.
“Saranac was the first to introduce a ‘trail mix’ in 1996, and we’ve continued to make every effort to ensure that our variety packs meet the high standards we’ve set in this category,” said Rich Michaels, Saranac’s product development manager. “This package is no different. Our 12 Beers of
Winter offers a fine selection of distinctive and drinkable beers for craft beer enthusiasts.”
The two encore brews in the 12 Beers of Winter variety package are:
- Saranac Big Moose Ale, which is brewed entirely with hop varieties bred and grown in the U.S. The recipe for this fan-favorite came from a homebrew made by one of the Saranac brewers, which won “Best of Show” in the New York State Fair Homebrew competition in June 2007. Saranac Big Moose Ale pairs well with grilled lamb, pork tenderloin, and cheddar and gorgonzola cheeses.
- Last year’s Saranac Chocolate Lager makes its second appearance. The delicious deep amber lager is made with certified organic cacao from Belize, setting it apart from its competition. This lager complements cocoa-rubbed meats and rich sweets, like dark chocolate or truffles.
Not only will consumers see the 12 Beers of Winter on shelves in November, but the F.X. Matt Brewery will also release two additional seasonal selections, both available in 6-packs and on draft: Saranac Caramel Porter and Saranac Season’s Best.
- Saranac’s brewers add real caramelized sugar, which accounts for some of the delicious flavor in the Saranac Caramel Porter. It pairs well with spicy foods, barbecue, smoked meats and creme brulee.
- Saranac Season’s Best — the longest-running seasonal beer in the craft brewing industry — celebrates its 30th birthday this year. First brewed in 1982 under the F.X. Matt label and stamped with F.X. Matt II’s signature, Saranac Season’s Best is a nut brown lager and complements roasted holiday dinners.
About Saranac Beer:
Beer is our Craft. More than a slogan, it’s the brewing philosophy that the Matt family has lived by for four generations. It’s an expression of the pride and passion that go into each and every ounce of their distinctive and drinkable beers. Located in the foothills of the Adirondacks, F.X. Matt Brewing Co. — America’s oldest craft brewery, New York’s oldest brewery and the second oldest family-owned brewery in the United States — has a long tradition of taking pride in what it makes. That’s how this family-owned brewery has quietly earned its reputation as one of the country’s most respected makers of specialty beverages. To learn more about its award-winning Saranac family of beers and soft drinks, visit the brewery’s website at www.saranac.com.