Barn Owl Blend No.2 -- In Bottles!

August in the brewery is a special time because the temperatures reach such great heights, and the humidity created from heat-sterilizing transfer lines is so thick in the air, that employees get the distinct impression they've been transported to a tropical destination or high-end spa (and all without ever having to brave the headache of Pearson airport)! Sure, there are no palm trees or chilled glasses of water in which slices of cucumber float delicately, but there is a walk-in fridge that I'm confidant could accommodate almost the entire 30+ team of staff members (standing room only) at one time, especially now that none of that pesky beer is in the way.

Yes, Bellwoods patrons might be aware that we're in the midst of Empty Fridge-Fest 2015, an event that usually arrives at least once a year, often in the summer, and wreaks havoc on our blood pressure. This is the festival in which demand battles supply, until supply is spitting out its own teeth and succumbing to a crumpled heap on the floor of the wrestling wring, entirely defeated. Lucky for you, the fight is mid-sequence, and we've yet to publish the official instagram post declaring that the last bottle has sold. Consider yourself warned of our dwindling bottle supply.

But in my best impression of the eternal optimist I aspire to be, I say out with the depressing news forecast, and in with the surprise bottle releases. For those wise newsletter subscribers this isn't anything new, but for the rest of you: Barn Owl Blend No. 2 is coming out in bottles!

Though it made a brief appearance on draft earlier this month (we were doing our best to avoid Empty Fridge-Fest 2015), we'd like to think of this as the official release. For those wondering what the deal is with our Barn Owl barrel blend series, refer back to this blog post for details. For those wondering what the deal is with THIS particular blend, let me read you a poem.

No.2 is a blend of 1 year and 3 year (80%/20%) oak barrel aged brett pale ales (the 3 year being with yellow plums), that utilizes several strains of wild yeast, and was dry-hopped with Ella before bottle-conditioning.

It can be tough to explain the idiosyncracies and nuances of each new barrel-aged beer, but I mean it honestly when I say that this is one we wish we could save for our own personal collections. It's reminiscent, in part, of Farmageddon, and yet the aroma conjures distant memories of Motley 2014. It's dry and refreshing, but with a focus on floral hops, an interplay of fruity flavours, and many references to our beloved brettanomyces. Aromatics of honeydew melon and papaya pique your interest, and flavours of apricot, tangerine, and oak impress on the palate. As you near the end of the bottle you'll experience a deep panic, quickly regretting your decision not to max out your per person bottle limit. That's why I'm here to tell you that foresight, too, can be 20/20.

When enjoyed fresh, the dry-hop shines; when enjoyed after some time spent in the cellar, the fresh floral aromatics die down and the brett funk and fruit take centre stage. It's definitely a choose-your-own-adventure kind of deal. Just over 3000 bottles will go on sale starting at 11am on Friday August 28th. Bottles are $12/each, with a limit of 4 per/person.