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Peabody’s Introduces Exclusive Collaborative Craft Beer Series: Cocktail and Blendiculous

Chris Riley Holds Bottles of Blendiculous and Cocktail series

Peabody’s has collaborated with craft brewers from all over the country in order to produce Peabody’s line of beers: The Blendiculous and the Cocktail series. Offered exclusively at Peabody’s, these beers combine the brewer’s recipe with ideas from Peabody’s.  Peabody’s serves as a pioneer and granddaddy of collaborative beers with various breweries.

Cocktail lovers can rejoice knowing there is a beer made for cocktail enthusiasts.  Wine connoisseurs do not be dismayed, there is a solution for you too. Have you heard of a cocktail beer or have you ever mixed wine with beer? If you have not, then Peabody’s Blendiculous Series and Cocktail Series are something you will want to try.

“The barrel is what makes the different cocktail beers. The idea behind the cocktail series is to collaborate with brewing friends, source the perfect barrel for the flavor profile, while creating a beer that emulates a cocktail. Peabody’s is one of the only retail shops that sells a consistent line of collaborative beers,”  said Peabody’s manager, Chris Riley.

The concept of the two beer lines is to take empty freshly dumped barrels from highly rated distilleries and fill it with beer. The beer will age in the barrel, and will take on new flavors from the barrels. The Cocktail Series uses liquor barrels, in order to create a cocktail-tasting beer. The Blendiculous Series uses multiple barrel treatments of whiskey, liquors, beers, and wine in order to create the perfect “kitchen sink” blend of flavors.

The concept of putting beer in barrels became very popular about five years ago. Peabody’s wanted to take it to the next level by taking several strong beers, mixing them together, and sourcing the barrels in order to have the freshest quality and best tasting cocktail beers. Peabody’s handpicked the barrels, which allowed them to select the perfect producers in order to create their beer series. In the past, brewers who attempted this did not always know who the barrels were coming from, which impacted the taste. The Peabody’s beer series are eclectic, rare, and intended to be like no other libation you’ve tried. Employees at Peabody’s provide excellent customer service, and are willing to explain the effects of taste when cellaring the two beer series.  

The Blendiculous Series has four beers, which are respectively named Blendiculous #1, Blendiculous #2, Blendiculous #3, and Blendiculous #4. The Blendiculous series uses multiple barrels and the focus is on the different blend of beers with selected barrels. The “Cocktail Series” includes The Manhattan, Sazerac, and the Olde Fashion. Cocktail drinkers love the Cocktail Series because the taste represents cocktail favorites.

Riley stated,“The Manhattan uses High West Manhattan Rye Whiskey Barrels with Vermouth, cherry, and bitters to create the Manhattan taste. There are sherry undertones in the beer, just like there is in the actual cocktail. It was meant to bring out the cocktail taste. The Sazerac and Olde Fashion use three-year-old Willet rye whiskey barrels that were dumped at the distillery, shipped, and filled with beer within 24 hours. It has a very fresh whiskey taste. The Olde Fashion is much more whiskey forward, in comparison to the Sazerac. The Sazerac is a cocktail with rye whiskey, absinthe, and lemon. Absinthe cannot be poured into beer, so, the brewers found spices and ingredients that replicated the taste of absinthe. As the Sazerac ages, the lemon tones will become stronger.”

When asking Riley about the Blendiculous Series, he said, “Blendiculous was the first line, which started in 2013. The idea is a combination of taking multiple barrel treatments from whiskey, rum, cognac, wine, and other barrels with different styles of beer, aged and then blended together. The focus on the Blendiculous Line is the barrels. Blendiculous #1 was a collaboration with Olde Hickory, which quickly rose to one of the top rated barley wines in the country. Blendiculous #1 was a blend of five different years of barley wine that had aged in barrels. There were five batches that were blended together, resulting in Blendiculous #1. Blendiculous #2 was a collaboration with Foothills Brewing. It was intended to be cellarable beer. It was a hoppier beer that was aged in barrels from Texas from Balcones Distillery. It adds an interesting take on a beer. Blendiculous #3 was with Fonta Flora Brewery, which is a small highly rated brewery in Morganton, North Carolina. This was a blend of multiple red and white wine barrels that that aged two different styles of beer. It was blended in two different tanks, and the beer was blended as it was being bottled to make an un-replicable brew. It is a tart sour ale that was aged on blackberries. Blendiculous #4 was also with Olde Hickory. The idea behind this was for it to be a smoked candy bar. Thus the name, “Blendy Bar.” It has a smoky chocolate taste and sat in barrels for two years.”

Both beer series were produced in relatively small batches of 100 or less cases. Most batches produced 60 cases. The barrels were only used once to ensure the freshest and strongest taste of the fused alcoholic beverages.

The cost of the beers vary from $10-$20 per beer. The beers are made with excellent craftsmanship and have many elements that separate it from other craft beers. The beers tend to be high in alcoholic content, which ranges from 8-12 percent. The majority of the beers are between 10-12 percent alcoholic content. These beers are better with time and are meant to cellar, which can potentially change some of the characteristics. Aging will bring out certain undertones, and layers, and some beers will become stronger and “boozier” as they cellar.

Peabody’s is currently thinking of a few ideas for their next beer series, so stay tuned!

The Manhattan was shared with a group of people, and the overall opinion was that the Ole Hickory Brewery Manhattan has an aroma reminiscent of a sweet sherry with overtones of brandy and currants. The appearance is a medium reddish-brown, showing some sediment indicating moderate filtering. It is lightly carbonated, with a quickly dissipating lace. The mouth-feel is full, creamy, and thick with an immediate taste of oak and a touch of smokiness, followed by a taste of currants with a hint of bitter orange aftertaste. The rich complexity of this beer masks the alcohol taste that would be expected with a 9.6 ABV. All in all, a reflective and pleasurable brew better to be savored than quaffed. It is excellent when very lightly chilled to deliver the complex aroma and taste. If you have not tried a cocktail beer, this is an excellent choice that I would recommend to everyone. This only applies if you enjoy Manhattan cocktails.

Peabody’s is a retail store that is unlike other stores within a very wide area. It sells a vast variety of beer, wine, cigars, chocolates, cheeses, clothing, accessories, glasses and has a variety of assorted food items.

Peabody’s is open from 9:00 a.m.- 11:00 p.m., on Monday through Thursday. On Friday and Saturday, they are open from 9:00 a.m. through midnight. Sunday hours are 10:00 a.m. through 10:00 p.m. Stop by and check the store out- there is something for everyone. Peabody’s is located on 1104 Highway 105 South, Boone N.C., 28607. For inquiries, contact Peabody’s at 828.264.9476.

If you have a special occasion, a planned event, a batchelor or batchelorette party, a house party, or a work party Peabody’s will cater to your event. They offer expertise in beverage and event planning, wine tasting group services, glassware, a vast plethora of wines and beers from all over the world, rare and unique wines and beers, mixers, condiments, soda, gift baskets, chocolates, accessories, ice and delivery. Call Peabody’s today to book your next event.

Peabody’s is on social media! Catch their latest activities on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, Pinterest, Youtube, LinkedIn, and RSS. This is an excellent way to see what Peabody’s is doing in and outside of the store. If social media is not for you, check out their blog on their website. This is a great way to learn about the culture of the organization. You may find their blog at http://peabodyswineandbeer.com/blog/.

If you would like to receive text updates from Peabody’s, you may sign up on their website page http://peabodyswineandbeer.com/contact-us/. If you are not from the Boone area, but would like to have certain items from Peabody’s, it is not a problem! Peabody’s will ship their merchandise to your front door, through FedEx. For inquiries email shipping@peabodyswineandbeer.com or call 828.264.9476 to place your order. The weight of your order will determine the shipping cost.

From left to right: general manager Kevin Burnette, beer manager Chris Riley and owner Jeff Collins