If you’re a fan of Blank Slate Brewing company down on Cincinnati’s East End (and I assume you are, because you like good beer) you’ll be happy read about some of this news. Not only do we have some new labels that have been approved, I’ve also got some great updates on what’s been going on in the brewery lately. They’re busy to say the very least.
It might have seemed like it took forever to finally get packaging from the brewery (and I assure you it probably seemed like it took even longer for owner Scott LaFollette), but now that these cans are making their way out the door and into your fridge he’s wasting no time with pushing out the beers that people have been clamoring for. Between Out and About, Fork in the Road and Fume – there’s already been a solid lineup of beers out there. These next two are big ones though, and they’re starting to give us a picture of how the seasonal releases are going to go.
When this launched it was part of Scott’s “Traveling IPA Series” which was an IPA that sort of shifted and changed on tap as the seasons did. As the brewery moved away from having no core beers, it became more of just a seasonal IPA. That doesn’t mean it’s “just an IPA”, though. It uses wheat to boost the body, and give it a full mouth feel as well as a fantastic group of hops to lift that flavor right into the sweet spot. It’s 6.5% ABV and a hearty 70 IBUs, to learn a little more, let’s look at the label:
Bright, Resinous, Restrained. A refreshing flavor profile containing two different wheat malts in addition to oats and honey malt meld with copious amounts of Columbus, Cascade and Nugget hops. The warmer weather of spring and summer is definitely a good time to get out and explore the “lesser known paths” around this world.
IPA fans, and non-IPA fans who are looking to maybe get into the style a little bit more will fall in love with this beer, and it’s going to be very welcome in my beer fridge. It fills the spring slot in the lineup of seasonal releases (I’ll talk about that lineup in a minute).
You might know this one better as Pilsen Mosaic as it made its debut in the taproom. The beer is a Kolsch that uses a unique combination of Pilsner malt alongside Mosaic hops to leave it as something really unique (and not so traditional). It’s going to become the summer seasonal in the rotation, you know, because it might be a perfect hot weather, summer drinking beer. The label gives us a good look at this beer which clocks in at 5.2% ABV and 30 IBUs:
Fruity, Dry, Quenching. Pilsner malt and Mosaic hops make up the entirety of the recipe for this amped up version of the traditional Kolsch style ale. Light, bready malt notes complemented with the fruit forward and citrusy punch of Mosaic hops make it an easy drinking summer beer with just enough “umph” to elevate it above the typical “lawnmower beer”.
Light, easy drinking beers have gotten a bad wrap with a lot of craft beer drinkers, do to our association we tend to give them with those mass produced light american lagers that we grew up with. This beer is not that even by a longshot, and you shouldn’t pass it up.
The Seasonal Lineup
So… we know that Fume is a seasonal can release, and now we’ve got another two to add to it. This rounds out the seasonal can releases from Blank Slate really well:
- Lesser Path
- Opera Cream
Did you catch that? Opera Cream. Yep, the locally loved Stout will round it all out come next year. With the core releases and these seasonal cans, it leaves one more part of the lineup that needs talked about – large format bottles.
Big Packaging Plans
We’ve heard rumblings about large format bottle packaging for a long time, and it’s getting close. It’s a bit too labor intensive for the brewery to put out year round releases in these large format bottles, but they’ll use the format to let loose on some of the one-off or rarer stuff.
First up with these is Ryesing Up (which is coming soon) and then it will be followed up with Shroominous.
Shroominous is a fun one, because from what I’ve heard, it ages really interestingly, something that so far has been difficult to manage because of its keg only format.
Some More Fun Tidbits
The label for this years Cincy Beer Week collaboration is in the works (Blank Slate will be doing the packaging).
Blank slate is also working on a label for their first taproom only beer release. This will come around the late spring, and they’re being really tight lipped about what it’s going to be. If I know anything about Scott and Blank Slate I can be sure of a few things, a) It wont be a NE style IPA b) it’s going to be something delicious.