When it comes to beer, it’s not what you know it’s whom you know and Troy Milburn of Brix Taphouse and Brewery knows the right people. In addition to brewing, Milburn is the founder of Vulcan Fabrications and he’s had a hand in both building breweries and supplying existing ones with much-needed hardware. Process piping is what the Bull & Bush Brewery in Glendale needed and process piping is what they got — that and a long friendship that is soon to produce a special beer.
“We just kind of wanted to show support for Troy and opening his new spot up,” Gabe Moline, Master Brewer of Bull & Bush tells The Pint. “He approached us and we agreed.”
Even though Bull & Bush has been around since 1971, this collaboration with Brix is the first time they’ve teamed up with another brewery. Not that the Peterson family was ever against the idea.
“We just haven’t done any,” Moline says.
The results: a Blackberry Wheat Wine that is 50% wheat with a generous amount of blackberries poured in. Moline then fermented it with a blend of English ale and saison yeast before aging the concoction in Syrah barrels from Alban Vineyards in San Louis Obispo County, California.
“They’re a winery that specializes in Rhône varietals,” Erik Peterson, Bull & Bush’s Minister of Progress explains. “They’ll do Syrah, Grenache, some white wines, some Viognier. … We get some really high-end [used] French Oak Syrah barrels from them.”
Moline says the Blackberry Wheat Wine tops out at 12% ABV, which isn’t just a reflection of personal preference — though he is a fan of big beers — but a necessity when it comes to working with wood.
“You got to be careful with the alcohol content when you’re aging in wood because there are a lot of beer spoilers in wood,” Moline explains. “The higher alcohol, the better it holds up.”
As Milburn puts it: “You don’t do anything simple with Bull & Bush. It’s all in or nothing.”
And they’ll be all in on Saturday, February 18 at Brix Taphouse and Brewery when they tap the collaboration at 8 p.m. To mark the occasion, they’ll be throwing a ’70s themed party with a deejay playing a whole lot of disco.
“Polyester is not required but encouraged,” Milburn says.
Check out the disco! https://www.facebook.com/events/227935364334917/