Tuesday, January 29th 2013
Black Walnut Wheat
(Piney River Brewing Company)
When it comes to utilizing regional ingredients in a beer, something that makes American craft beer so great, Piney River Brewing Company has really embraced something special. This small brewery located in the Ozarks of Southern Missouri makes good use of the indigenous black walnuts found in the region and has produced a very unique brew with some subtle yet complex flavors. What was once a small batch, draft only brew, is now one of the brewery's most popular beers and one of four beers they currently can.
From the Piney River site:
"Buckets, burlap bags and pickup truck beds are filled with black walnuts each fall in the Ozarks. The rich and lively flavor of the wild, hand-harvested black walnut is a renowned flavor of the region. We're proud to continue celebrating local flavor and tradition with our handcrafted Black Walnut Wheat Ale."
Here we go...
Pour - dark chestnut in color with an espresso like head on top. Some nice ruby reddish highlights when the light hits the glass. Looks like a well put together brew.
Aroma - malty sweet aromas include caramel, molasses, cocoa, and dark roast coffee. There are also some earthy aromas at play here and perhaps a bit of nuttiness.
Taste - as a dark wheat ale this has some great balance between the dark roasted malt flavors and the body that the wheat provides. Plenty of roasty notes along with molasses and a distinctly nutty flavor from the chestnuts. The finish is semi-sweet with a bit of dryness on the tongue - which only forces your face back in the glass for another sip.
Overall - an extremely drinkable, very flavorful, and nicely balanced beer and one that you can enjoy immensely at only 4.5%. The chestnuts provide a very unique flavor to this dark wheat ale and it goes great with the roasty elements of the malt. Its understandable why this became an instant favorite and why it is now available year-round in cans. Well done!
Note - Black walnut wood is used to make furniture, flooring, and rifle stocks, and oil is pressed from the seeds. Nuts are harvested by hand from wild trees. About 65% of the annual wild harvest comes from the U.S. state of Missouri and the largest processing plant is operated by Hammons Products in Stockton, Missouri. The black walnut nutmeats are used as an ingredient in food, while the hard black walnut shell is used commercially in abrasive cleaning, cosmetics, and oil well drilling and water filtration. - Wikipedia
Posted by Russ
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