(Originally Posted January 5, 2010)
Celebration at the brewery to introduce Sheep Eater Scotch Ale, ring in the Scottish New Year.VICTOR, ID — On January 9, Grand Teton Brewing Company in Victor will host the release party for their Sheep Eater Scotch Ale and welcome the New Year with the traditional Scottish “Burning of the Clavie.” Condemned by churchmen in the 18th century as “an abominable, heathenish practice,” the burning of the clavie continues to this day in Burghead, a small village in northeast Scotland.
On January 11, Hogmanay, the first day of the New Year by the old Julian calendar, a tar-filled barrel is set on fire and paraded through the streets of the village. Smoldering embers from the clavie are left on the doorsteps of notable townsmen to bring them good luck in the new year.
Grand Teton will recreate the traditional revelry on January 9 from 5-10 p.m. with live music by Victor’s own bluegrass band, the Random Canyon Growlers, as well as plenty of Scotch Ale in versions available only at the brewery’s pub. A highly anticipated bacon-infused Scotch Ale will be served from the cask. Come one come all, there is no cover charge.
Sheep Eater Scotch Ale is the final ale in their 2009 “Cellar Reserve” series of specialty beers, which are dedicated to and brewed in strict adherence with the Reinheitsgebot, the 1516 Bavarian beer purity law. Each beer this year has been brewed to highlight one of the four true beer ingredients: malt, hops, yeast and water.
Sheep Eater Scotch Ale was brewed to showcase the role of malt in the flavor of beer.
This Scotch Ale was brewed with black roasted barley and peat-smoked malt. It was gently hopped, fermented cool and aged cold for weeks for smoothness. It is copper-brown in color with some sweet maltiness and plenty of body.
Try it with ham, roast pork or chicken, roasted vegetables or venison, crème brûlée or, most traditionally, Scottish butter shortbread cookies.
Scotch Ales are some of the world’s most flavorful beers. Scotland’s cold, blustery climate lends itself to the growing of barley and oats but not to the production of hops, which are almost always added sparingly.
The yeast must work at cooler temperatures than is customary for ales, resulting in maltier, cleaner, less fruity or estery, beers. The color often comes from black roasted malt, which imparts some dryness, but because of the lower attenuation and hopping rates, Scottish ales are almost always slightly sweet and incredibly drinkable.
The Cellar Reserve series of beers are unique, different even from other craft beers. Grand Teton’s Cellar Reserves are brewed with specialty hops and malts and unique strains of yeast. Most ales and lagers are produced in 2-4 weeks. However, 3 to 8 months are spent on each of the Cellar Reserve specialty brews. They are also bottle and keg-conditioned, which produces natural carbonation and will blend and smooth the flavors with age. These beers have a long shelf life and don’t need to be rapidly consumed. Proper aging of these bottles creates beers to be cherished.
Grand Teton Brewing releases four different beers a year in the Cellar Reserve line. The production quantity is very limited. Sheep Eater Scotch Ale is available in kegs and unique brown one-liter, flip-top bottles, with captivating labels.
The Sheep Eater Scotch Ale is available at select locations in Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, California, Oregon, Montana, Washington, New York, Arizona, Nevada, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Kansas and Missouri! Call the brewery at 1-888-899-1656 for information and availability on this exciting new product.