This first month and a half in Virginia has been a whirlwind of pilot batching, and even with the challenges of brewing on a small scale, it's been quite fun. One of the things that drew me to The Virginia Beer Company over other projects was the emphasis placed on having a variety of beers. While we will certainly have our core, year round beers (more on those later), we want every visit to our taproom to offer beer lovers something new to try. My early pilot batch brewing has definitely been reflective of this philosophy, and it has been a fun change of pace from my more regimented production brewery background.
At two private parties we have served our Citrus Wheat and IPA; along with the first iteration of our rotating Saison series, Saison Tournant Galaxy/Amarillo; and a Wet-Hopped Cascade Harvest Red (brewed with Virginia-grown hops). The response has been incredibly positive across the board, not only for the individual beers, but for the variety of beers we are presenting.
There's more variety to come, as well! Currently fermenting I have an Oatmeal Stout and Hoppy Rye Amber, along with more Citrus Wheat and IPA (including a small batch of IPA fermented solely with the wild yeast, Brettanomyces). We'll have to wait a bit for that one, but I'm excited for the combination of flavors and aroma brought about by Brettanomyces and Pacific Northwest hops.
This week will bring a new iteration of Saison Tournant featuring various peppercorns, so I have been hard at work propagating more of our Saison yeast strain!
To small batches and variety. Cheers!
Clockwise from top left: Citrus Wheat with grapefruit & orange peel, IPA with Azacca hops, Wet-hopped Cascade Harvest Red, and Oatmeal Stout