We’re very excited to announce that on this Friday, November 3rd, we’ll be releasing our 2017 SPON — Three Year Blend!
2017 SPON — Three Year Blend is a blend of three different vintages — 2014, 2015 and 2016 — of 100% spontaneously fermented beer. Our goal is to make beer inextricably linked to our time, place, and people by harnessing the microflora, climate, and ecology of the Texas Hill Country.
Simplicity and patience are the key elements at play. We add Texas-grown malted barley from Blacklands Malt and raw, Texas-grown wheat to the mash, boil with gnarly old hops that have been sitting in our barn attic since 2013, let the wort sit out overnight and collect native microflora from the air, then spontaneously ferment it in oak barrels without pitching any yeast. From there, we see what slowly develops as the years go by, and then blend and bottle it, if it’s any good.
When it comes to spontaneous fermentation, the Belgian Lambic tradition lit the path for us by showing us how unique and beautiful spontaneously fermented beer could be. We’ve tried to learn from what came before us and allow it to adapt to our own surroundings. We know of no simpler or more elemental way of making beer that’s tied to place than making sugar water with what’s around us, and letting the microbes at the brewery turn it into beer. Like our natural wine maker friend Lewis Dickson says, “Our secret is that there is no secret”.
For our 2017 blending season, we made five separate, distinct blends bottled on different dates:
2017 SPON 1 — Three Year Blend (Bottled on January 25, 2017)
2017 SPON 2 — Three Year Blend (Bottled on January 31, 2017)
2017 SPON 3 — Three Year Blend (Bottled on February 6, 2017)
2017 SPON 4 — Three Year Blend (Bottled on February 13, 2017)
2017 SPON 5 — Three Year Blend (Bottled on February 15, 2017)
All the blends contain roughly 17% three year old beer, 33% two year old beer, and 50% one year old beer. The 2017 blends were made by our Head Brewer Averie Swanson.
The first two blends will be released at 4pm on Friday, November 3rd at our tasting room. Blends 3, 4, and 5 will be released sometime later this year. 2017 SPON 1 — Three Year Blend is 5.6 percent alcohol by volume, 42 IBU, 3.4 pH, and has a finishing gravity of 1.002 (0.5 Plato). 2017 SPON 2 — Three Year Blend is 5.8 percent alcohol by volume, 39 IBU, 3.3 pH, and also has a finishing gravity of 1.002 (0.5 Plato).
Both blends will be available by the glass and in bottles to go. Here are the quantities, bottle limits, and pricing for the first two blends:
2017 SPON 1 — Three Year Blend, 375ml, $20, 1,800 bottles, limit 3 bottles per customer per day
2017 SPON 1 — Three Year Blend, 750ml, $36, 1,150 bottles, limit 3 bottles per customer per day
2017 SPON 2 — Three Year Blend, 375ml, $20, 1,400 bottles, limit 3 bottles per customer per day
2017 SPON 2 — Three Year Blend, 750ml, $36, 1,075 bottles, limit 3 bottles per customer per day
Like we did for our 2016 blends, we’ll be holding back a pretty significant portion of our 2017 blends for long term cellaring and to have available at our tasting room every weekend to enjoy onsite.
Finally, 2017 SPON — Three Year Blend adheres to the standard of Méthode Traditionnelle. As we’ve written in the past, it has been an enormous challenge trying to decipher a stylistic name for spontaneously fermented beer inspired by Lambic, but made outside the traditional region. Saying “G(u)euze-style” or “Lambic-style” without using the actual “G-word” or “L-word” creates a conundrum. Fortunately, such problems do not exist when it comes to other styles like Pilsner, IPA, and Tripel! We like and support the notion of having it mean something when a brewer says their beer is Lambic-style or Lambic-inspired. The beer should in fact be 100% spontaneously fermented and adhere to a simple, elemental process. Aside from this however, we have little desire for politics and discord, and are content to make beer tied to our surroundings at our tiny brewery in the Texas Hill Country, and share it with those who come to visit us.
We hope you enjoy our 2017 blends! They took a lot of time and patience to produce, and represent a simple, authentic expression of time, place, and people.
Founder, Jester King Brewery
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