Epic Brewing Announces Sour Brainless on Peaches Release Party

epic sour brainless peaches label

The third iteration of Sour Brainless on Peaches has already hit some fine liquor store establishments around the metro area, and there is a planned release party at Epic Brewing Company’s Denver taproom this Saturday, May 13th, when doors open at Noon.

We were lucky enough to catch up with Ant Baez, Epic’s Barrel Blender and man in charge of all their barrel-aged beers and sours, to taste batches 1, 2, and 3 side-by-side and learn more about all of the hard work that goes into this special beer.

Epic and Ant have been producing this beer since 2013, when they acquired their original 3 foeders from New Belgium. They have now expanded the program to 14 foeders, which Ant can rattle off the names of in less than 4 seconds, but the original 3 (Emily which is funky and earthy, Molly brings citric and lemon tartness, and Stacy with an acidic bite), make up the base beer for Sour Brainless on Peaches.

epic foeders

The beer is made by using the Solera method, which allows for continued bacterial growth and maturation over time. Solera is a process that uses the same vessel repeatedly by only draining a portion of that vessel, leaving some of the original beer behind. No bacteria has been added since 2013!

The fun for Ant comes in figuring out how the beer is changing over time and working to grow up together. In his own words, “Sour beer is a rollercoaster of emotions.” It takes a lot of patience. Once the foeders work their magic on the base, which takes a minimum of one year, the beer is transferred into barrels with peach puree. From there, Ant, a self-proclaimed “flavor engineer,” tastes the beers frequently and rates them on a scale of 1-5, with 5 being the very best. You might think you could simply blend all the 4’s and 5’s and call it a day, but it is a much more complicated art. There is a place for some 2’s and 3’s in the blended batch to round out the flavor profile just how he wants it.

epic3

Tasting Notes:

Batch 1- Acidic and funky, lots of peach flesh, juicy like the inner part of a peach.

Batch 2- Much more citric tart, like a lemon. Peach skins.

Batch 3- Very citric, more tropical up front, super tart.

It was such a great time listening to Ant, who tastes this baby weekly and nurses it up to the beauty that comes out in each batch. Each batch was delicious, I’d call #1 my current favorite. Trying these side-by-side makes me want to both drink all of the older batches in my personal cellar immediately, but still hang onto them for a future vertical.

epic sour brainless bottle

On Saturday you will find very limited amounts of both batch 1 and 2 for sale, along with quite a few bottles of batch 3. Get over there and see for yourself.

Thank you so much to Eric Matelski, Ant Baez and the rest of the Epic family for sharing the beers and knowledge of your sour program. We look forward to seeing what else develops in the future!

By: Matt Morris

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