After months of planning and over two years of aging, Brooklyn Brewery and Thornbridge Brewery have released their eagerly anticipated collaboration: Serpent. The two breweries have worked together in the past, taking great pleasure in swapping brewers to learn and create excellent beer. So when Brooklyn Brewmaster Garrett Oliver started to think about an unprecedented aging experiment, he took it right to Thornbridge Head Brewer Rob Lovatt to call upon his barrel-aging expertise.
“Project Serpent,” as it was first dubbed, began life as a strong Belgian golden ale– floral, fruity, and a touch peppery, all backed up with the strength for a serious stay in barrels. The beer was then blended with cider lees (the leftover yeasts, skins, and other byproducts from cider fermentation) from Oliver’s Cider and Perry. The lees add a uniquely funky, fruity element to the beer that cannot be imitated by anything other than lots of patience. Then, the whole mix moved into Four Roses bourbon barrels, and they waited.
And waited. And waited, for two long years.
Now, Serpent is finally here, bold complex and utterly beguiling. It is a deceptively smooth beer, with each sip inviting the next as you explore the hidden twists and turns the lees bring to the liquid. It is very easy to reach the bottom of your glass in much less time than you expect, so be careful. And maybe share it with some friends so you can use the buddy system to keep an eye on one another.
Serpent is now available in fine bottle shops across the UK, and a limited bottling will reach US shores later this year. This release is extremely small, so be sure to snap up Serpent as soon as you see it. You can learn more about the beer by watching this video with Rob and Garrett, but we think you’re better served by finding your bottle first. Serpent won’t stick around for long.Back to all blog posts