They say you should never mix spirits and beer but aging a beer in a bourbon barrel is a different story. It’s occasionally hard to find that specific Four Roses mashbill and yeast strain you’ve been looking for but as hundreds of bottles of bourbon are filled each day that means there are hundreds of used barrels left over. And those staves in those barrels are still filled with flavor. Now through a new collaboration some of those barrels have made their way to New York City’s Brooklyn Brewery.
Bourbon lovers and beer fans alike can raise a glass to the launch of the latest edition of Brooklyn Black Ops, a collaboration from Four Roses Bourbon Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky and New York’s Brooklyn Brewery. The new, limited-release beer was aged in Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon barrels hand-selected by Four Roses Master Distiller Brent Elliott and will be available this November.
Re-Barreled, Re-Fermented and Re-Imagined
A Russian Imperial Stout, this vintage of Brooklyn Black Ops is 12.4% ABV, raises a fluffy dark brown head, and combines big chocolate and coffee notes with a rich underpinning of vanilla-like oak. In addition to the barrel-aging, the brew was re-fermented with Champagne yeast.
“The partnership began with a long-time friendship between Brooklyn Brewery Brewmaster, Garrett Oliver, and Four Roses COO and Director of Operations, Ryan Ashley, and the resulting beer is just as rich as the relationship in which it began,” Elliott said. “Four Roses Small Batch provides some very complex flavors and unique characteristics so aging this iteration of Black Ops in the used barrels produced a beer with a hint of mellow Bourbon character and a very smooth finish.”
“The combination of the legendary Brooklyn Black Ops and the equally respected Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon is a situation where the drinks are each ennobled by the other. And that’s a perfect partnership,” said Brooklyn Brewery Brewmaster Garrett Oliver.
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The 2020 Brooklyn Black Ops will be available in very limited quantities wherever Brooklyn Brewery is available. Approximately 2,000 cases of cork-topped, 750mL bottles will be sold in the United States with a suggested retail price of $24.99.
Brooklyn Black Ops will also be available at the Four Roses Distillery visitor center in Lawrenceburg and Four Roses Warehouse & Bottling Facility in Cox’s Creek.