Back in April 2019, we invited our friends ORA Brewing to join us in the brewhouse to create a duo of collaborations, using similar ingredients but produced very differently, experimenting with process and pushing those ingredients to different boundaries.
The first of these beers, Blackcurrant Sorbae, was a kettle sour with a quick turnaround which became one of our fastest selling beers ever made. The second, Chianti BA Blackcurrant Saison, is an altogether different beast, which has taken nine months to realise its full potential.
The only similarity between the two beers is the initial pre-soured wort. For the Chianti BA release, we took the first runnings of the brew, pre-kettle sour, where it underwent primary fermentation with a blend of our house saison yeast plus a pitch of lactobacillus. The fermentation was warmer than usual, around 25C (rather than our standard 22C). Towards the end of fermentation, we dosed whole blackcurrants into the tank and allowed them to sit for a few days.
Now this is where this beer gets particularly special. Once primary fermentation was complete, we transferred everything into three Chianti barriques, sourced and personally selected by our friends at ORA direct from Renzi Botti, one of the most iconic casks producers in Modena, Italy. Dan spent the day with Renzi Botti’s owner, Francesco, carefully choosing the barrels which would give us the desired final flavour of robust fruits coupled with a tasty tannic backbone.
We have aged the beer in these exceptional barrels for around 9 months before packaging into KeyKeg. The resulting beer holds a vibrant rounded acidity and a plethora of soft fruit flavours. Plus, it’s pink!
We hope you enjoy the beer.