SAN ANTONIO — Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling is no stranger to barrel aging. Four of their previous Small Batch beer releases have been barrel aged, and of course they use barrels to age their Texas whiskey. However, their newest release is perhaps their greatest barrel aged accomplishment to date. They have patiently waited for over 2 years to craft and release a very limited amount of a mature sour beer.
Small Batch Series No. 6 is a Flanders Red Ale that comes in at 8.0% ABV. It’s a blend of 18 and 24 month barrels, resulting in a balanced, mature sour beer. It was re-fermented with strains of Brettanomyces, Lactobacillus and Pediococcus, giving it a well developed and complex aroma of tart cherries with underling rich earthy tones. These notes are complemented by the addition of local Texas figs and tart red cherries. This sherry-like sour is deep red in color with hints of dark stone fruits, red apple and a slight tartness.
Due to the growing popularity of the quarterly-released Small Batch series, Ranger Creek had to place Small Batch Series No. 6 on allocation with accounts. The brewery sold all of the 450 cases to retail accounts in a little over a week, so all of the available bottles are now on retail shelves. Ranger Creek recommends that beer drinkers grab a couple of bottles so they can drink one and save the others to add to their collection. Small Batch Series releases are meant to age well over time and will cellar best in a dark place around 50 degrees. Each batch is brewed and bottled by hand and undergoes a secondary fermentation in the bottle. Pour carefully so as not to rouse the yeast.