Saturday, January 08, 2011

Ackerman’s lives again: The 2011 BIG Winterfest ReplicAle is Imperial Double Stout ...

... an historic New Albany beer recipe reclaimed by the NABC brew team.

When Indiana’s craft brewers convene in Indianapolis for the annual Winterfest gala on Saturday, January 29, they’ll each bring a “ReplicAle.”

It’s a special one-time beer brewed by different Indiana brewing companies from the same basic recipe of malts and hops, but with their own local water and house yeasts.

The 2011 Winterfest recipe for ReplicAle, as researched and recreated by the New Albanian Brewing Company’s Jared Williamson and Jesse Williams, is Imperial Double Stout – an iconic product once brewed by New Albany’s long defunct Ackerman’s Brewery.

It has been three-quarters of a century since Imperial Double Stout was last seen hereabouts. Just after the repeal of Prohibition, it was formulated, brewed and distributed by the Southern Indiana Ice & Brewing Company, which was known locally as Ackerman’s Brewery.

Ackerman’s operated from 1933 to 1935 at the site of the former Paul Reising Brewing Company premises on the corner of West 5th and Spring Streets in New Albany. The brewery building was demolished in 1969 to make way for what is now the Holiday Inn Express.

In its brief heyday, Ackerman’s Imperial Double Stout was brewed only once each year, at Easter, as an early springtime treat for the brewery’s loyal customers.

Imperial Double Stout was meant as a substitute for Doppelbock, a German style traditionally served during Lenten fasts. It is rich, dark, strong and ideal for contemplative, cool-weather sipping.

As is customary, Winterfest attendees get the first chance to sample, contrast and compare Imperial Double Stout’s various reincarnations as brewed by breweries all across the state of Indiana.

Afterwards, limited amounts of NABC’s version of the elixir will be poured at NABC’s two New Albany locations, providing a tasty and educational glimpse into New Albany’s brewing past.

Jared’s and Jesse’s Imperial Double Stout recipe specifications:

Original Gravity: 20 degree Plato
Alcohol By Volume: Circa 8%
International Bittering Units: 35 – 40

Grist Bill:
80% Rahr 2-row Pale Malt
5% Briess Aromatic Malt
5% Briess Dark Chocolate Malt
5% Briess Roast Barley
2.5% Briess 80-degree Caramel Malt
2.5% Briess Cherry Smoked Malt

Single addition at boil of your choice of hop, to achieve 35 - 40 IBU

Miscellany … Did you know:

Winterfest is an annual beer festival. In 2011, it takes place on Saturday, January 29, and offers the opportunity to sample over 150 beers from 50 different breweries – two ounces at a time. Winterfest is staged by the Brewers of Indiana Guild (BIG), whose members include all of Indiana's microbrewers and brewpubs. Other sponsors include World Class Beverages, Crown Liquors, NUVO, WTTS, Brewers Supply Group, and Briess. Winterfest is held at the Ag/Hort Building of the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis. Proceeds from Winterfest benefit Joy's House, a charity that provides care for adults living with physical and mental challenges. Winterfest tickets are available online … ... (with link to Etix)

… or at Crown Liquor stores in Indianapolis and environs.

NABC’s friends at Rick & Jeff Tours are offering motorcoach transportation to Winterfest 2011. The trip includes motorcoach transportation from Louisville to Indianapolis and back; Winterfest ticket; sample glass; program; and lunch & refreshments. The cost per person is $85. To reserve your spots, contact Rick at 502-314-6056 or

The Brewers of Indiana Guild (BIG) is a non-profit 501(c) trade organization that focuses on promoting public awareness and appreciation for the quality and variety of beer produced in Indiana. With an all volunteer board, our members are dedicated to promoting responsible consumption of craft beer, while working to benefit a community larger than just our members.

Other brands brewed by New Albany’s iconic Ackerman’s brewery (1933-1935) included Amsterdamer Bock; Great Eagle; Gold Crest; India Pale Ale; Daniel Boone; Royal Munich; Vienna Select; and Old Rip.

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