A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to try a very rare collaborative brew out of Breckenridge Brewery called Holidale. Holidale is an 240 bottle limited run, that Breckenridge Brewery produced in collaboration with a local Denver liquor store, Applejack Wine and Spirits. Of the 240 bottles, I was lucky enough to get bottle 89 thanks to my father who lives in the Denver metro area. The full press release found here is posted at the bottom of this write-up. The concept behind it is a simple one, take the already excellent and award winning Breckenridge Christmas Ale, dry hop it and age it in a bourbon barrel to develop all of the wonderfully complex flavors that bourbon barrels and dry hopping bring to the party. My dad and I shared the bottle, I just wish we had an appropriate glass to enjoy it in.
According to the press release Holidale is:
“A new twist on Breckenridge Brewery's longtime winter seasonal, Christmas Ale. Dry hopped and aged in whiskey barrels, Holidale offers toasted biscuit notes complemented by soft caramel sweetness and hints of oak and whiskey warmth… The 750ml cork and caged bottles lend themselves to sharing over the holidays. Just 240 bottles of Holidale will be available this season.
Holidale was a very interesting beer that is extremely complex. It was dark amber/mahogany in color with a very thick and creamy tan head that has excellent retention. The aroma was extremely complex with nice pine and grapefruit from the Chinook and Mount Hood hops, backed up with a slight caramel and chocolate maltiness, combined with an added layer of oak (Cabernet barrel?) for additional complexity.
The Holidale was an awesome beer! If you happen to be able to find it, it is definitely worth the price. However, you may only be able to find a bottle on the auction sites. Then again, you may be lucky enough to pick up a bottle of the 2012 vintage this December
That’s all for tonight, my next update will happen sometime this weekend, read down to the bottom for the press release from Breckenridge Brewery.
BRECKENRIDGE BREWERY & APPLEJACK WINE & SPIRITS COLLABORATE ON NEW HOLIDAY SEASONAL
“Holidale,” whiskey barrel-aged Christmas Ale, debuts this week at Applejack Wine & Spirits
Denver, CO – December 12, 2011 – Craft brewer and retailer collaborate to create and deliver a special holiday beer. Breckenridge Brewery and Applejack Wine & Spirits got together this fall to brainstorm ideas for a special beer for Applejack customers. The result is Holidale – a new twist on Breckenridge Brewery's longtime winter seasonal, Christmas Ale. Dry hopped and aged in whiskey barrels, Holidale offers toasted biscuit notes complemented by soft caramel sweetness and hints of oak and whiskey warmth.
Holidale debuts on the shelves at Applejack Wine and Spirits in Wheat Ridge, Colorado, this week. The 750ml cork and caged bottles lend themselves to sharing over the holidays. Just 240 bottles of Holidale will be available this season.
“Applejack Wine & Spirits has long enjoyed its relationship with Breckenridge Brewery,” says Joe Peters, General Manager of Applejack. “To have this unique opportunity to collaborate with their master brewers to create a special beer for the holidays has been a project of pure enjoyment. The beer has incredible flavors that capture the essence of what a great craft beer should be. We are thrilled with the result of our collaborative effort.”
“Colorado’s independent liquor stores, like Applejack, have always embraced the Craft category and have been instrumental in our growth,” says George O'Neill, Director of Sales for Breckenridge Brewery. “As we aggressively increase our capacity at the brewery, our ability to innovate and experiment will also grow. This will allow us to seek out unique, collaborative partnerships with retailers, like Applejack, both locally and nationally.”
O'Neill adds, “Our goals are to help satisfy the thirst the craft consumer has for interesting one off brews and to meet the increasing demands of our retail partners who are seeking to quench that thirst.”
About Applejack Wine & Spirits
Applejack Wine & Spirits is a family-owned Colorado institution. Located at I-70 and Youngfield, Applejack Wine & Spirits was founded in 1961. Over the years it has become the single largest independent store selling wines, beers and spirits, in the country. With approximately 16,000 different items, Applejack Wine & Spirits is considered to be a must stop shopping experience.
About Breckenridge Brewery
Breckenridge Brewery was founded in 1990 in Breckenridge, Colorado. In the past two decades Breckenridge Brewery has grown from a small 3,000-barrels-a-year brewpub to one of the most successful craft beer and restaurant companies in the nation. It now handcrafts over 37,000 barrels of fresh beer annually and owns and operates five brewpubs and ales houses in the state of Colorado.