Brian Strumke, the mastermind behind Stillwater Artisanal Ales, has no shortage of innovative craft beer ideas. Since beginning his “brewery” (Strumke is a self-described “gypsy brewer”), he has collaborated with numerous other beer makers, both in the U.S. and around the world. To usher in 2013, Strumke has come up with a new concept: the Stillwater Sensory Series, which aligns brewing with visual and audio arts.
The first installment in the series is called Lower Dens, named for the Baltimore band with whom Strumke collaborated to create a multi-media product involving beer, music and video. Inspired by the Lower Dens song In the End is the Beginning, Strumke set out to create a beer he felt matched the sound of the music — which he describes simply as “white light.”
Lower Dens is brewed with hibiscus and appears very similar to a saison, but — as with many Stillwater offerings — is relatively open to interpretation. Poured from an attractive 375-ml. (12.7-oz.) bottle into a tulip glass, the beer resembles Strumke’s description almost perfectly. A robust clean white head sits atop a rose-hued liquid that quite closely resembles a burst of light.
The aroma of Lower Dens is impressively floral, bursting with notes of rose hips. At first sip, the brew follows suit in terms of taste, with touches of hibiscus and rose playing nicely against subtle hints of dark fruits and a light wisp of smoke. Despite being uniquely flavored and complex, this beer does not become overbearing, and is in fact quite refreshing. At a relatively light 6% ABV, Lower Dens makes for very easy drinking.
There’s more to the beer than just the imbibing, however. As part of the multi-media project, the bottle is labeled with a QR code that, when scanned, will take the drinker to an exclusive performance of the namesake song. Stillwater’s Sensory Series is a unique and exciting venture from a brewery that is already one of the most forward-thinking in craft beer, and this first volume is definitely worth trying. Find it at Of Love and Regret, the Stillwater-affiliated pub in Baltimore, or across the country wherever Twelve Percent Imports’ beers are sold.
Colorado-based brewery Oskar Blues will continue its growth in the craft beer scene thanks to its recent purchase of Perrin Brewing Co....read more ›
Do you have an idea for a bar or restaurant? You could win up to $50,000 to get that idea off the ground. ...read more ›
Head to Declaration Brewing Company this summer to declare your independence from your normal watering hole. ...read more ›
Have you ever dreamed of having an amazing home bar, filled with bottles you actually use and the tools you need to execute a finely crafted cocktail?...read more ›
AB-InBev purchased Elysian for an undisclosed sum in January. Three months later, Cantwell resigned. "Working ...read more ›
Writers and musicians have a long, storied history with alcohol, and that intimacy with the bottle shows through in the memorable lines these artists ...read more ›
It's beginning to smell a lot like summer, and for America, that implies one very important thing: baseball se...read more ›
If you've ever wondered what beer you should sip with your ice cream, the answer you've been waiting for is fi...read more ›
This bottle opener might be the easier one to lose yet. ...read more ›
Want to take a ride in a giant flying cucumber? This could be your chance!...read more ›
We had the opportunity to speak with Tukwini Mandela, granddaughter of Nelson Mandela, about the House of Mand...read more ›
Heineken Light just made a new, impressive-sounding promise: If you don't think its beer is the best-tasting l...read more ›