Lewiston’s Brickyard Brewing Company are taking a page from classic literature for their newest beer series. Entitled Ahab’s Voyages, Head Brewer John Paul Meteer and his brewing team are playing the role of Captain Ahab, from Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick, as they search for their White Whale, played in this case by an ever-elusive Pale Ale Meteer used to brew during his days as a homebrewer.
“That’s my baby. My white whale, as it were,” Meteer says of series. “I used to make an AMAZING pale ale at home. I’ve tried a few times to make it here, and it just hasn’t translated yet. So now, I’m chasing it. Relentlessly.”
Meteer says to expect “different malt blends, different fermentation profiles, different hop varietals, and experimentation with volumes and timing of hop additions” from the Ahab Voyage series. “Our first batch was almost 4 pounds of hops per barrel, but it didn’t hit the mark for me,” he adds.
The first installment in the new series is Ahab’s Ale (Voyage I), an American Pale that features Cascade and Citra hops in the boil and is then dry hopped with Cascade, Citra and Mosaic, for subtle malt notes that balances flavors of pithy citrus, fleshy fruit, and dankness.
The Ahab’s Voyages series will be something of a trial and error effort for Meteer and his team, but we’ll all get to try what comes of it as long as he is happy with the brew itself. Speaking of which, he says that Voyage 1 is pretty close to where he ultimately wants it to be.
“As long as we’re happy with the outcome (or as happy as I ever am with my beer) they’ll go on tap. The current batch is ALMOST where I want it. Just trying to push it to where the fruity esters and hops flavor make it super peachy and apricot like my old homebrew version.”
And along with Ahab’s Voyage, Brickyard Brewing is also launching a weekly cask program, following in the footsteps of another local beer staple, Flying Bison Brewing. Firkin Fridays, as the new series will be called, was inspired by Meteer’s recent trip to Scotland.
“Firkin Fridays, that was inspired by my trip to Scotland. All I drank for four days was cask ales (then I switched to Single Malt, LOL). I am obsessed with the depth and texture and mouthfeel of cask beer. It’s unlike anything else.”
Brickyard is kicking off their Firkin Fridays on a high note with the return of Taco Tuesday White Bronco, fermenter-fresh White Bronco New England IPA, which is not quite fully attenuated and tacked right into the cask with limes, jalapeño and cilantro. “We also filled a cask of Bronco and added Nelson Sauvin and Galaxy as a dry hop,” Meteer adds.
There is apparently a lot more coming too. According to Meteer, future installments of Firkin Fridays will feature a Porter with Cinnamon. Also, be on the lookout for a brand new New England Double IPA with Grungeist and Galaxy hops, and the return of Booplesnoot, a New England Wheat Double IPA.
For more information, please visit https://www.facebook.com/BrickyardBrewingCompany.
Brian Campbell is a co-founder/Brand Manager of the BNBA’s enthusiast arm, Buffalo Beer League, and writes the weekly Buffalo Beer Buzz column. If you have beer news that should be included in the Beer Buzz, Brian can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter (@buffbeerleague), Instagram (@buffalobeerleague), Facebook (@thebuffalobeerleague) and www.buffalobeerleague.com.