With the coming of the bigger beers for Iowa, I’ve pestered a few folks to see what we might expect.
Scott at Knoxville’s Peace Tree Brewing Company, a newcomer to the Iowa beer landscape, was understandably enthusiastic about the passing of SF 2088, which allows Iowa brewers to begin producing beers up to 12% ABW. “We lobbied hard to make it happen,” he said. “It’s about time.” While he didn’t tip his hand at any specific beers, he looked forward to the ability to kick up Iowan IPAs and Belgian offerings a notch.
I’m actually pretty impressed that Peace Tree isn’t going to immediately change gears and fire up something huge. I don’t reckon getting distracted from their core beers, the ones that will pay the light bill, at such an early stage in their business would be ideal. They just got their 20 bbl system up and running and are in the process of bringing the bottling line to the green light.
I’m looking forward to trying the Peace Tree stuff–we’re plotting a field trip in a few weeks.
But Rock Bottom is well-established, so it’s no surprise that brewmaster Eric Sorensen has his guns loaded and ready to fire:
“I think it’s great that our legislature and the Governor has heard the voice of the people and is willing to move the state into a bit more of an even footing with the rest of the world, especially our surrounding states. This will mean better beer in better condition in our market and styles of beer being brewed that follow our celebrations of the seasons.
Although I realize that it will be a bit out of the norm, I will be releasing New Era Barleywine, which was brewed last November in anticipation of this change, in July as soon as we can secure an AA license. This will coincide with a true American Dream IPA which we will also be tapping that month. In the fall, I will be releasing an Imperial Stout, a portion of which will be tapped in October after having aged in a barrel with pumpkin mash, pumpkin spices and cacao nibs for Rock Bottom’s first Pumpkinfest. In November I will brew the Naughty Scot as a Wee Heavy for the first time moving it out of the 90/- category. In December we will warm the nights with Old Thumper Barleywine, which will have spent a year in fresh Labrot & Graham Woodford Reserve barrels.”