Widmer Brother’s Reserve Cherry Oak Doppelbock gives way to Prickly Pear Braggot, a beer and mead combo
I remember when I stopped drinking Widmer Brother’s Brewing beers. I was on a high road to beer snobbery, and I felt that the brewery had sold out by selling out to a larger brewing conglomerate. Years later, when I came back to their beers because of a number of good experiences with their winter seasonals, I remember lamenting my decision to stop drinking their beers.
This illustrates two things. One, that brewers must produce seasonals and specialty beers in order to keep current customers coming back looking for new and exciting experiences based on the brewery’s reputation. And two, that customers need to realize that just because a brewery might be sold to a larger conglomerate doesn’t mean their quality or reputation should suffer.
OK, lesson learned.
Here’s my latest regret. Last week I was at John’s Market in Portland, Oregon. I saw this beautifully labeled box of beer from Widmer. It advertised a Cherry Oak Doppelobock as part of their Brother’s Reserve Series, a selection of one offs that are hard to find and of really high reputation. I should have bought one, but I was looking for other brands and breweries that I wanted try instead, so I bypassed it. I shouldn’t have. Here’s the description from the Widmer site:
Cherry Oak Doppelbock is a high gravity ale co-fermented with Dark Sweet and Red Tart cherries. After primary fermentation the beer is allowed to condition with and ferment the cherries, and then later conditioned w/ new toasted American oak. The result is a dark ruddy beer with up front malty sweet and cherry fruit notes overlaid on and completed by undertones of caramel malt, dark chocolate, and oak. Cherry Oak Doppelbock is cold fermented with an American Ale yeast.
And now, I’m seeing that Widmer is marketing the latest in their series, which has a description like this:
Reserve release #2, our Prickly Pear Braggot, is now out in full force. Braggot is a style that is a combination of mead and beer. Remember those picture of our brewers dumping the honey in the kettle? Mmmmmm…you’ll love this.
If you happen to run into one of the Brother’s Reserve Series, pick one or two up.