Jack’s Abby is the sponsor brewery for this weekend’s Drink Craft Beer’s Springfest. We’ve brewed a special Double India Pale Lager for the fest. Read more about The ABCS on our Beer page or on the Drink Craft Beer blog. Here’s the video they shot when they came to help brew:
This weekend, April 5th & 6th, Drink Craft Beer Springfest focuses on New England-made beers that feature one of our favorite ingredients, hops! By attending, you’ll be able to sample 70+ beers from 25 of New England’s best craft brewers, each one of them bringing at least one hop-focused brew! Many of these are being made specifically for this event or will be released there.
Additionally, you can sample and purchase from several local food vendors including Drink Craft Beer friends such as Roxy’s Grilled Cheese, of Great Food Truck Race fame and known for their delicious gourmet concoctions perfect to pair with hoppy beers. Other food options will include delicious seasonal fare, local cheese and more.
Friday night will be a VIP session called Hoppy Hour. There will be a collection for special beers from 25 New England breweries, each one a special batch or variant made just for the Hoppy Hour VIP Session in addition to the full Saturday lineup of brews! Everyone will bring at least one special brew, dry-hopped cask or other super limited beer that will only be available on Friday night and was made specifically with this session in mind.
Originally posted at The Beer Nut:
As we blogged last week, we have started brewing at Jack’s Abby Brewing. Last week we kicked things off with our one-time special brew, Red Tape Lager, and our first core beer, Saxon Sons Pilsner. Our next goal was to brew our other two core beers right away. We brewed the first of these, Smoke & Dagger, last Friday. Tomorrow, we will be brewing the last one, Hoponius Union.
Smoke & Dagger is a smokey, dark lager. It gets its character from a combination of beechwood smoked malt and chocolate malt. We are currently buying the smoked malt from Germany. Ideally, we’d like to find someone local who can smoke the malt we need. Thanks to the growing Jack’s Abby community, we have already received two leads that we are now investigating. If you know someone that would like to smoke 110 lbs. of malt a month, let us know.
For those of you that love a hoppy beer, you will want to check out our Hoponius Union. We are calling it our India Pale Lager. Sourcing many of the hops that we needed for this beer has been challenging, but we persevered with success. Hoponius Union will feature Amarillo, Citra, and Centennial hops. Whole leaf Centennial hops will also be used in the hopback to add to the aroma. What will differentiate Hoponious Union from a traditional IPA is that it will be lagered cold for an extended period of time. The result will be a fresh new take on a classic.
With our core beers well on their way, it will soon be time to brew our fall seasonal, Copper Legends, an Oktoberfest lager. Expect this to be ready at the end of August.
Originally posted at The Beer Nut
This is the blog that I have been waiting to write: Jack’s Abby Brewing is now brewing beer! All of our licenses, permits, inspections, etc. are complete. Our final town inspection was on Tuesday and we celebrated by brewing immediately.
We know that the first brew never goes entirely as planned, often resulting in a taste that can never be duplicated.
For our first brew, we did a single batch of a specialty red lager. This beer was brewed with 100% Dark Munich malt and Glacier hops. We are calling it Red Tape Lager in reference to our dealings with various state agencies.
Yesterday we made a double batch of our first core beer, Saxon Sons Pilsner. This was our first chance to use our hopback. For this brew we used whole leaf Saaz hops in the hopback. As we quickly learned, these were some especially aromatic Saaz with a 9.6% AA. Has anyone else ever seen Saaz this high? This allowed us to add a great aroma to our Pilsner.
Tomorrow we are starting our planned brewing cycle of one batch per week as we get out the rest of our core beers. We are still waiting on pending malt deliveries to determine the exact brewing schedule.
The Red Tape Lager and Saxon Sons Pilsner will be available to sample at the brewery on Thursday, July 21st. We will also be pouring growlers on site. After that, look out for our beer on tap at local bars and restaurants. If you have a place where you’d like to see Jack’s Abby beer on tap, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We would like to thank all of the hardworking tradesmen, family, friends, and supporters who worked around the clock to make this happen. We would also like to thank the Town of Framingham which has welcomed us into the community and supported our project.
[Originally published at The Beer Nut]
One of the most exciting projects we have going on at Jack’s Abby Brewing is our hop project. The endeavor started innocently enough when my mother and I brought back a Cascade hop plant from a trip to Washington in 2005. It was planted at our parent’s farm in Vermont on the pool trellis. Since day one, we have used entirely organic methods to nurture the plants.
We have gone through many expansions while experimenting with a variety of hop strains. To expand our hop growing knowledge and success, our father joined the North East Hop Alliance, eventually serving on their board of directors. In addition to the original Cascade plant, we now also have Zeus, Centennial, Willamette, and Nugget varieties. These are the varieties that have proven to be able to thrive in Vermont’s climate.
In 2008, the initial hop-growing area was expanded to accommodate larger yields. Four rows of sixteen-foot high trellises were built with wires stretching 130 feet. Each trellis supports 50 bines. In 2010, the hop yard was doubled to 8 rows.
We recently built a garden outside the brewery with 20 cascade rhizomes from our original plant on the pool trellis. This hop garden gives us a chance to show off our efforts and also to experiment with some new growing methods researchers have discovered. The optimal trellis height to grow hops is 16 feet. A lot of work was put in to discover what height works best for growing hops when 16 feet is not an option. Researchers have learned that 9 feet is the optimal height for shorter trellises. We are experimenting with these shorter trellises for our garden outside the brewery.
Our hop-growing operation does not come close to meeting our overall demand for hops. Instead we use our crop each year for a special wet hop beer. This process involves harvesting all the hops at both locations on one day. These fresh hops are then used within 24 hours. The result is a uniquely aromatic and hoppy lager. The exact flavor depends on that year’s yield and varietal harvest. This slight variance means that we get to share something unique with you each year.
I hope that you are looking forward to trying our Wet Hop Lager as much as we are. You can also stop by the brewery at any time so see how the hops are doing.
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