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#40 – Sierra Nevada Barrel-Aged Bigfoot and NOMEANSNO

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Tony Simon and Russ Sauve

Atlanta, Georgia

Description: Drink Up and Shut

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#40 – Sierra Nevada Barrel-Aged Bigfoot and NOMEANSNO

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READ THIS WHOLE THING. It contains updated, post-recording information about the beer – Barrel-Aged Bigfoot Ale from Sierra Nevada.

This is a big episode. Big beer and big music. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Ale is on a short list of standard bearers for American Barley Wine, and it has been for 30 years. They recently released a barrel-aged version of the beer, and everyone lost their damn minds. Not that we blame them. We were lucky to snag a couple bottles.

We found some information Barrel-Aged Bigfoot from SN Product Development Manager, Bill Manley, on beeradvocate.com. We had some additional questions about the beer, so we reached out to Sierra Nevada directly. Manley responded directly, but, unfortunately, his response came in a couple days after we recorded, so we’ll have to incorporate the info in this here episode description.

At the 5:00 mark, in reference to the fact that regular Bigfoot is 9.6% ABV and Barrel-Aged Bigfoot is 12.2% ABV, I ask, “How is the barrel-aged version bigger?” I asked whether this was a special batch specifically for barrel aging. Manley responded:

    This was a special batch designed for barrels. The same recipe as our regular Bigfoot release, just brewed with the intention of barrel-aging. It was brewed in Spring, whereas the usual brewing period is in December. It was brewed in Feb-March 2011.

There were also rumors that there will be more of this beer released soon, possibly even this year. I asked if more details were available. Manley’s response:

    Definitely not this year. We’re planning to re-vamp and expand our barrel program, and ideally, would like to do several barrel-aged releases per year. Right now, we’re so tight with capacity that we don’t have the opportunity to expand the program much further. As the new North Carolina brewery comes online and we have a little bit of opportunity for expansion, we will build a better infrastructure for beer and barrel handling and will expand the releases after that point. We’re hoping to do another BA Bigfoot release in 2014, but no more for this year.

Also, I sarcastically refer to Manley as a dick because of his reference, on beeradvocate, to the existence of a Pappy-barrel-aged Tripel that never made it to market. Upon repeat listens, my sarcasm may or may not be obvious. SARCASM, you guys.

As for the music, it is hard for me to begin to capture the sheer magnitude of here.

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