I want to collaborate with a couple of the local breweries this fall in developing a some beer based products. Since we have several breweries here in the Yampa Valley, we have some choice as to what we use. I am thinking of doing a malt whiskey, a beer schnapps, and perhaps an akvavit with some local craft.
I'll do some roto-vap and/or 3 gal distillations in the coming weeks, but I know there is a lot of experience here to tap into first.
Anyone care to share their experience or direct me to some useful threads?
We recently did an unhopped Porter. Came out quite interesting. Sold well. Technically it was a malt whiskey.
Are you selling these as new make spirit??
Not sure who you are asking, but yes we did. Sold it as whiskey as it was all malted barley, hence the no hopps. We had the brewer make the wort and then we transferred it prior to fermentation. Fermented in house, then distilled and barrel it.
The finished product had notes from the Porter, but was definitely a whiskey. It was fun to watch reactions as people tried it. The different flavors hit at different times.
Bump...anyone else have any advice?
The marketing value of aligning/collaborating with a well known/respected local brewery is far the most valuable part this kind of thing.
We did a brewery collaboration last year, sold 300+ bottles out of the tasting room in 4 days. The vast majority of the customer base were brewery regulars and folks close to the local craft beer scene.
That is valuable information. Thank you Silk City.
Reply:1 hour ago, Silk City Distillers said:
Yeah agree - focus has been on sharing cooperage as well as co-ideation.
Beers aged in our barrels, whiskies finished in their barrels.
Thr breweries have done a number of them, using bourbon, rye, and rum casks.
Rum cask IPAs are really nice, we have had great luck with IPA cask finished bourbons. Will do some whiskey in stout and dark barrels, and I’d love to do a gin in an juicy citrus NEIPA or a Farmhouse cask.
We've done a series of malt whiskeys with a brewery in the same building. They sell well. We did a stout that came out nice, a wheated beer which was a huge hit, and an IPA beer which was niche but people liked. The IPA took much longer to age out - too harsh at first. If possible, you may want to have the brewery tweak their recipe to remove the hops which do't always distill out well and which add to the mashbill cost. All in all its a fun collaboration opportunity though if you are buying the beer you'll need to up the price a bit as the raw material costs are higher than a bourbon/rye.