5 years ago Epic made its first Barleywine to celebrate its 10th anniversary. It also commemorated the 1000th brew at Steam Brewing Company. There is a lot of history with Luke starting as an assistant brewer at the Cock & Bull / Steam Brewing in 1997.
December was Epic’s 15th anniversary and we are also commemorating the 2000th brew at Steam Brewing Company. It’s great to be celebrating 15 years of Epic, as well as our relationship with Steam Brewing. It was 2007 when Luke went out on his own after buying the Epic brand from his then employers. But it was definitely not the end, it was just the start of a long and beneficial relationship. You will note that the alcohol content is 10.2000% abv. This is a fun little throwback to Epic’s 10th anniversary beer where the alcohol was 10.1000% to represent 10 years and 1000 brews. This time it represents the 2000th brew and the fact we are only releasing 2000 bottles. The recipe is inspired by the 10th anniversary but with an American expression of a Barleywine this time.
Why an American style Barleywine? As a fan of Barleywine Luke enjoys both expressions of what they can be. Luke had the incredible privilege of judging the final medal round of Barley Wine at the 2012 World Beer Cup in San Diego with seven judges at the table. The table was split on the gold medal winner. Both were absolutely stunning beers and both deserved Gold but one was English style and one was American style. It took over an hour of debating between all the judges to come up with a decision. The winner was....
Our 10th anniversary we brewed a traditional English style Barleywine which is more malt driven, and uses more earthy hops such as the classic East Kent Goldings. An American Barleywine is more US hop driven, and we have used the classics of Cascade, Chinook and Centennial hops. Both beers have been designed to be aged for potentially up to 25 years. We have found that after 5 years the 10th anniversary is just now starting to really shine. Potentially 15th anniversary is going to be better in the first 5 years as the hops are going to be pretty big.
Since there is only going to be a limited number of these available you are best to get hold of them as soon as you can so you don’t miss out.