Hello all! Today I have a fun post for you – i’ve dug into our archives and found some of our retired specialty ales to share with you. Some were interesting, some were strange, but all were no doubt delicious.
Lemon Balm Pale Ale (2010-2014)
This was one of our first specialty beers ever! This was definitely a popular one. This pale ale had a hint of lemon thanks to the lemon balm herb that Ed added to the recipe. This beer also had a slight hint of mint. It truly sounds delicious. If we had to resurrect any specialty beers from the past, this would be my vote.
Dandelion Stout (2010)
Dandelion stout was a favorite for medicinal purposes during the Victorian era, as dandelions were thought to cleanse the liver and prevent kidney stones. Ed brewed up a delicious take on a stout, with a little dandelion twist.
Raspberry Porter (2010-2013)
This one sounds delicious. According to our previous beer blogger Karrell, the raspberry porter had “a rich, full bodied taste with a subtle tart finish,” and was even brewed with raspberries picked from the village! There was even a short lived chocolate raspberry porter brewed in 2012.
Spruce Beer (2011-2013)
This spruce beer was brewed for our Battle of Black Creek event. It’s very historically accurate, as soldiers actually would have been drinking spruce beer to prevent health issues such as scurvy. However, Ed has told me that this beer tastes like a liquid Christmas tree. Perhaps not for everyone!
One Mile/Estate Ale (2011-2012)
This was a great little experiment we undertook between 2011 and 2012. The goal was to produce a beer with all the ingredients grown at the village! Of course, this was very hard work and extremely difficult to manage, so this was a specialty brew for only about a year.
Sweet Potato Ale/Potato Stout (2013-2017)
Who knew potato goes with beer? We brewed a variation of a potato beer for a few years, where some of the barley in the mash was replaced with potatoes. In Victorian times when many farmers would brew their own beer, they could replace some of the barley in their mash with a starch such as potatoes if there was a bad crop or blight one year. However, the potato doesn’t make too much of a difference in the taste of the beer, especially in the stout. I would describe our potato stout as earthy, but very similar to our usual stout.
Sweet/Milk Stout (2012-2014)
This is another one I would have loved to try. Surprisingly, beer and lactose make a good pairing! The addition of lactose gave this stout a rich, silky, and smooth body. Milk stouts were originally brewed to be healthier than a regular stout, thanks to the addition of the lactose.
What an interesting list. Of course, this is not extensive, but these are some of the ones I thought were the most interesting. Who knows, maybe next year some of these interesting flavors might make a comeback!