Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Week of July 21, 2008: Carobs, Chestnuts, Chinotto & Chamomile: Italian Microbrewed Specialties.

NABC/Rich O’s themed guest beer weeks are coming throughout July.

Week of July 21, 2008
Carobs, Chestnuts, Chinotto & Chamomile: Italian Microbrewed Specialties

Italy is indisputably Europe’s newest craft beer frontier, with dozens of innovative artisanal breweries coming into existence during the last decade. Courtesy of the groundbreaking importer B. United International, the Public House will be featuring four newly available Italian microbrewed specialties, none seen before on draft in metropolitan Louisville, and each with a twist. The following descriptions come from B. United’s web site.

Birrificio Grado Plato … Piedmont region
Malts: Pale malt, Vienna malt, dark malts, oat malt {over 30%}
Spices: Venezuelan cocoa beans, carob
Hops: HallertauerAlc/vol: 7%
Chocarrubica is a top-fermenting oatmeal stout creation of deep black color. The adding of Venezuelan cocoa beans, carobs from the island of Sicily, and large amount of oats {over 30%} gives this unusual Italian creation its silky, chocolaty, and roasty character.

Strada San Felice
Birrificio Grado Plato … Piedmont region
Malts: Pale malt, Vienna malt
Spices: Piedmont chestnuts
Hops: Kent Golding, Saaz
Alc/vol: 8%
This 8% alc. amber-colored beer, is actually bottom-fermented. The flavor and aroma of local chestnuts gives Strada San Felice its original and distinctive personality. All the chestnuts are grown in Piemonte, in a very famous area for chestnut trees. They are then dried over a wood-fire. It pairs well with traditional autumn and winter cuisine such as game and stews.

Piccolo Birrificio … Liguria region
Spices: Juniper, chinotto peel, coriander
Hops: Hallertauer
Style: Saison
Malts: Pale malt, Vienna malt, wheat malt
Seson, rated Italian’s best Saison-style interpretation in 2006, is spiced with, among others, chinotto {a small bitter citrus fruit, which is now under the protection of the Slow Food organization), and matured in Chardonnay wooden barrels.

Appearance: Big yellowish foam, orange-golden color
Aroma: Citrusy, touch of lemon and lime, grainy
Flavor: Pronounced citrusy notes, turning bitter {chinotto influence!} and tart , very well balanced against its malt sweetness
Finish: Blend of citrusy, bitter-tart character lingers forever

Chinotto: small bitter citrus fruit from the chinotte {myrtle-leaved orange tree}. It grows in the regions of Liguria, Tuscany, Sicily and Calabria. It is of bitter and sweet taste and often served as aperitif to open the palate.
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Nuovo Mattina
Birrificio del Ducatio … Emilia Romagna region
Style: Italian saison style
Malts: Pale malt, unmalted & malted wheat malt, oats, rye malt
Hops: Hallertauer, Chinook
Spices/fruits/herbs: Coriander, ginger, green pepper, chamomile; licorice
Alc/vol: 5.9 %

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