DURANGO, Colo. — A little bit of the islands comes to Durango on Friday, Oct. 3, 2014, as Steamworks Brewing Co. taps the Caribbean Coconut Stout at 3 p.m. for Firkin Friday, Steamworks’ monthly showcase of unique hand-crafted beers.
“I started out by toasting some shredded coconut then deglazing it in a pan with spiced rum, brown sugar and cocoa,” said Steamworks Brew Master and Certified Cicerone┬« Ken Martin. “Then this mixture went into our Backside Stout and gave off aromas that reminded me of being on a beach in the Caribbean.”
“We feel that the flavors of the spiced rum and coconut will work nicely with the chocolate and roasted coffee flavors of the stout,” said Steamworks Brewer and Certified Cicerone┬« Spencer Roper, noting that the stout has a robust ABV (alcohol by volume) of 6.4. “To find out for sure, be here at 3:00 on the 3rd!”
By definition, a firkin is an old English unit of volume, typically a wooden cask equal to approximately one-quarter of a regular barrel, or nine/ten gallons. The word “firkin” is derived from the Middle Dutch word vierdekijn, which means “fourth” as in one-fourth the size.
In the United Kingdom, cask-conditioned beer, which in the U.S. is also referred to as a firkin, is known as “real ale.” Authentic cask ale must be kept at “cellar temperature” — about 54 degrees — and is conditioned in its cask in Steamworks’ “cellar,” or actually the basement at the brewpub.
In cask conditioning, the yeast transforms the sugar into alcohol within the cask, and the natural carbonation results from the trapped carbon dioxide occurring as a byproduct. Firkin beer is unpasteurized and unfiltered and served at the cellar temperature – cool but not cold.
Steamworks initiated its Firkin Fridays to introduce unusual, specialty craft beers to patrons, and augment its regular, award-winning offerings. Steamworks, open 11 a.m. to closing seven days a week, is located at 801 E. Second. Ave., Durango (970.259.9200). For further information, visit www.steamworksbrewing.com.