San Francisco, CA — ThirstyBear Organic Brewery joins the ranks of other acclaimed West Coast breweries such as Sierra Nevada, Rogue and Speakeasy by mastering the art of aging barley wines. Since opening in 1996, founding brewmaster Ron Silberstein has diligently dedicated a portion of his year-round craft beer program to the production of singular barley wine. ThirstyBear’s cellar includes barley wines dating back to the year 1999. Annually released on the day following Thanksgiving, ThirstyBear proudly launches its latest seasonal, CELLAR SERIES: BARLEY WINE 2012 (9.4% ABV, 65 IBU), this Friday, November 27, 2015.
Initially becoming prevalent during 19th Century England when strong ales were brewed to “the strength of wine” (10-12% ABV), barley wine was first coined on a beer label by The Bass brewery (1870). The CELLAR SERIES: BARLEY WINE 2012 emulates an English style rather than its American counterpart; the latter embracing a hoppier and darker profile. ThirstyBear utilizes a large portion of British Pale Malt with a bit of Biscuit Malt to provide a toasty, bready character.
“Since this ale finishes stronger than an IPA, we like to cellar our barley wine for a couple of years to allow the flavors to meld, and also see how it evolves over time,” says ThirstyBear’s brewmaster Brendan Dobel. “Its aroma has prominent notes of dried fruit and apricots, and the barley wine has a dry, sherry like finish.”
Dobel’s brewing starts with packing the mash tun to almost overflowing, providing as much malt sugar (wort) as possible. He then collects the first runnings, and with as little mash rinsing as possible, creates a rich wort in the kettle. This wort is boiled extensively to further concentrate the sweet liquid, and then generously hopped to provide the perfect hop bitterness to balance the full-bodied malt character.
CELLAR SERIES: BARLEY WINE 2012 debuts on Black Friday and will be available throughout the remainder of the year exclusively at ThirstyBear.
ThirstyBear Organic Small Batch Beers Are Available Fresh, Only On Draught, Only At ThirstyBear!
About ThirstyBear Brewing Co.
Established in 1996, ThirstyBear Organic Brewery is the first and only brewery in San Francisco to brew certified organic beer and become a certified Green Business. Born out of Founding Brewmaster Ron Silberstein’s longstanding commitment to support sustainable agriculture, ThirstyBear brews CCOF and FDA certified organic beer with the finest hops and grains. ThirstyBear sources its ingredients from the world’s most renowned malt houses and premier West Coast organic hop farms to distinctly pair their craft beers with its exquisite Spanish cuisine. Since 2002, Silberstein has collaborated with Brewmaster and Certified Cicerone Brenden Dobel to define a singular German-influenced West Coast style of brewing, with a special emphasis on pilsners, IPAs, stouts, Belgian-inspired ales, cask conditioned ales, session beers, and barrel aged brews. Dobel’s expertise with German beer styles is the result of his extensive training at Doemens Brewing Academy in Munich, Germany.
As one of the first critically acclaimed Spanish tapas restaurants to open in the Bay Area, ThirstyBear’s Executive Chef Robert McCarthy churns out some of the city’s top paella, tapas, charcuterie/cheese and beer pairings, flatbreads, 100% grass-fed beef burgers, and specialty dishes cooked not only with beer, but with beer’s raw ingredients (hops, malts, yeast). In addition to its year-round and seasonal craft beer line-up, ThirstyBear also proudly serves local wines from kegs to reduce its overall carbon footprint.
According to the Brewers Association, which keeps the most comprehensive information on craft breweries in the United States, ThirstyBear brews and serves more craft beer in-house than any other brewpub in San Francisco.