Valiant Brewing is proud to announce the inaugural release of Jericho Imperial IPA in 750ml bottles! This will be our first ever bottling of our amazingly complex and aromatic Jericho Imperial IPA.
We will also have a full tap compliment of our other beers for sampling as well, such as Hotspur Dunkleweizen, Criterion – a Belgian Amber Honey Rye, and our fantastic Stentorian Barleywine.
We will also be releasing two new draft selections as well!! Fall Saison, 10.5 MPG, brewed with Molasses, Persimmons and Graham cracker, 10.5%abv!
A special thanks to Chef Cody from Hopscotch in downtown Fullerton for helping us with the inspiration and preparation of the persimmons. And last, but not least, a classic Belgian Golden Strong, Kratos, that weighs in at 12.5%abv, loaded with mild pear notes and ester complexities that truly engages the palate!
Also, starting at 3:30, The Chomp Chomp Food truck will also be on hand to whet your appetite with their Singapore Sloppy Joe, Sling Wings, Chili Crab Cakes and Satay!
You don’t want to miss the first-ever release party for the Best New Brewery in Orange County as reported by the Orange County Hot List 2013!!
It is always fun to look back in time and see what you’ve accomplished or didn’t but most important, to understand just how fast time flies!
Today may seem like an ordinary Friday to you but to the Valiant Brewing team, today’s marks a very important event in history. One that will always be close to our hearts and that we’ll always look back to and reflect the beginnings of Valiant Brewing Co.
On October 18th, 2012 – Va liant Brewing Co. officially received all the approvals needed to break ground on the construction phase of opening a brewery. One year ago we took the first major step in performing our construction in order to provide the most perfect home for our brewery. I can remember so clearly that day when I got the call from the contractors telling me that the cement cutter guy is on his way over to the building. I also recall calling Jack (our sales rep) over first thing that morning to open the doors for the crew since I was still working at my other job!
With a camera in hand, Jack open the doors and let the party begin! I considered this the “Point of No Return” the only way to call the job finished was to open our doors as a brewery.
Here is a view from the beginning – freshly painted walls and noting but cement that needs to be removed!
The pictures shown here really don’t do justice to how much work was completed in the background prior to any construction. What took months and almost years to plan became reality in about 30 seconds as the cutting blade moved through the foundation of brewery floor. Yes, to reiterate, this was a very exciting time!
Up to this point, it had been paperwork. Our ABC license was in check, the TTB was up to speed and we had been approved for one last inspection before getting our license, we received our conditional use permit from the city, approval from the Orange Police Department, finished our building plans and got them approved by the Orange Building Department, had our landlord’s approval to move forward with this crazy idea of opening a brewery, and the list goes on and on.
Please stop by the brewery if you haven’t in some time to see the growing list of beers that we have on draft. We promise that we’ll continue to push boundaries and offer high quality craft beer!
Cheers to everyone!
Part 14 in our ongoing series of posts introducing you to the Valiant family of beers. Today’s installment: Stonewall Jackson 5.
Okay, the name probably gives it away—but we’ll go ahead and just say it: this is a really fun beer. It was fun to brew, and it’s darn fun to drink!
This Double Red Wheat was the first beer we brewed on our new Pico system (more on that in an upcoming post!). But that’s not the only reason it’s a landmark of sorts. Brian pushed the Hef yeast strain almost into the 9% range, which makes Stonewall Jackson 5 come across almost as though it’s been oaked.
The aroma alone will knock your socks off: mild sweet cherry, hints of clove, caramel maltiness, and deep notes of raisin and prune make you eager for that first sip—and it doesn’t disappoint: malty caramel richness combines with bold bitterness, leading to a dry finish.
Not too heavy at 8.7% ABV and 50 IBU, Stonewall Jackson 5 was a sort of experiment for Valiant (hey, when have you ever seen a Double Red Wheat?), and we were excited that it came out so great. With a classic Hef malt bill (and 50% wheat to add a velvety, creamy texture), it has exciting esters that go well with the Golding and Vanguard noble hops added at the end.
So easy to drink, you’ll probably think it’s just a 4% beer—but Stonewall Jackson 5 is more like an aged port: rich with wheat and notes of cherry and raisin, it offers a bit of bitterness to round out the palate and finishes with classic Hef tartness.
The newest addition to our brewery… also represents the history of Valiant.
Way back when we realized we wanted to go pro with craft beer, there was still one big unknown: would we be a contract brewery? A nano brewery? A micro brewery?
Brian designed a system, the manufacturer’s price was right, and we took the plunge. The day we went out to pick up the equipment was huge! We were hauling a trailer of all this brewery equipment down the freeway, with people honking at us and waving.
That was when we started to feel really official!
Next step: Brian had to figure out how to hook up all the equipment. He started searching for parts on eBay, and even got a huge heat exchanger (since the Blichmann he had for his original homebrewing equipment was too inefficient for this 80-gallon system).
We set up in the garage. As we fine-tuned the business plan for our brewery, Brian got very familiar with his new system. And eventually, the business plan took a turn and we realized we were going to go big—very big!—with our brewery.
Back to the drawing board: Brian designed a new system (the one you see in the tasting room today), incorporating many of the parts we’d already gathered. And the rest is history!
Now that history has come full circle. Our smaller system is part of the big picture, allowing us to brew small batches of experimental beers (and—just as important, though slightly less exciting—to propagate yeast for our brews). Stonewall Jackson 5 was brewed on this system.
Before we set up the Pico system last month, it had been two years since Brian had brewed on it! It might be going overboard to say it felt like a homecoming… but we will admit that it’s awesome to have the flexibility to make sure our beer is the absolute best it can be, going out the door.
So next time you’re in the tasting room, admiring all the shiny equipment, make sure you spare a glance for our Pico. After all, it’s where Valiant got its start.
Part 13 in our ongoing series of posts introducing you to the Valiant family of beers. Today’s installment: Tilt Shift.
As the name indicates, Tilt Shift is a departure for Valiant—and something new for craft beer fans, too. This Belgian IPA was a real challenge to brew, balancing Belgian characteristics with the hops (not just in the flavor, but in the aroma).
Brian studied up on hops and different IPA styles before cooking up this recipe. A Belgian golden strong yeast provides a lot of esters, giving Tilt Shift a fun aroma combining citrus and tropical fruits… and bubble gum.
The clean malty flavor expresses hop flavors of sweet spices and pineapple, with a refreshing bitterness (from Cascade, Zythos, and Opal hops) to balance everything out.
Small beer batches like Tilt Shift give us a chance to do some yeast propagation, too. So in the near future, watch for news about Valiant brewing a a Belgian golden strong . (Now that’s multi-tasking—brewing a cool, fun beer with a side of functionality!)
Easy-drinking at 7.1% ABV and 66 IBU, Tilt Shift is on tap until our four kegs run out. (At least, unless demand pushes us to keep it on year-round!)
Part 12 in our ongoing series of posts introducing you to the Valiant family of beers. Today’s installment: Stentorian.
Many years ago, we had a vision—a vision of a lager that could break through the 5% range. And now, that vision is a glorious blonde lager we like to call Crescendo.
It’s a craft beer for the Coors crowd. As Brian says, we wanted to give Bud Light guys a chance to taste what it’s like on the craft beer side, where flavor and decent ABVs (6.5%, in this case) happily coexist.
Light in color, with the clean, malty backbone of lager yeast, Crescendo gets its flavor from three different hops. A thirst-quencher on a hot day, it’s light enough to pair successfully with chicken, salads, even a juicy cheeseburger. Or give it a try alongside a citrus tart or even an oatmeal raisin cookie with vanilla ice cream. (We know, we know—we give amazing food pairing suggestions!)
While Crescendo is going to be a mainstay of the Valiant beer list, it’s also the base of an exciting short-run beer that Brian brewed up. He took seven barrels of it and made an India Pale Lager out of this blonde lager—the same wort, but a different hop schedule from Crescendo. (In all modesty, we have to say it’s incredibly awesome.) He added seven types of hops, and came up with a 6.66% ABV beer with 62 IBU. It’s not on tap yet… but don’t worry: we’ll let you know as soon as it’s available in the tasting room!
Join us for our Barrel-Aged Barleywine, Stentorian, 13.3% abv beer release party this Saturday, August 31st!
Behold: a Jericho BOTTLE LABEL.
Now, we know what you’re thinking: does this mean that Valiant is bottling beer??
Short answer: Not yet–but soon! We have to run the label by the TTB and the ABC and then we get to play with our beautiful BOTTLING MACHINE. (Seriously, take a look at these pix and tell us it’s not beautiful! We double-dog dare ya!)
And don’t worry–you’ll be the first to know when Valiant bottled beer is available!
Part 11 in our ongoing series of posts introducing you to the Valiant family of beers. Today’s installment: Stentorian.
It’s the beer you’ve all been waiting for: STENTORIAN, Valiant’s English barleywine!
Considered the strongest ale offered by breweries, our English barleywine is all about sophistication.
Deep copper and bronze, Stentorian is hazy enough that you can’t see through it. The aroma offers immediate hints of dried fruit, like plum, date, and rich raisin. The overtone of caramel sweetness combines with a deep malty aroma, while a slight presence of oak helps balance out the complex floral notes from the late-addition Goldings hops.
This full-bodied beer is fairly high on alcohol (13% ABV), but your first impression will be the intense caramel and toffee flavors that result from the multi-layered complexity of our selection of malts (and long kettle caramelizing). Moderately sweet, Stentorian’s hop bitterness is perfectly balanced; the flavor is quite fruity. (Oak-aged versions yield even more depth of character with a slight hint of vanilla obtained during the aging process.)
Mark your calendars: STENTORIAN Release Party August 31 in the tasting room!
In fact, Stentorian’s intense character can make it challenging to pair with main dishes. It’s the ideal partner for desserts (try it with hazlenut torte or caramel cheesecake) or strong cheeses, like Stilton.
Though we pour Stentorian when it’s ready to drink, it can get even better with age. Given the right storage conditions (upright, in a dry dark area no warmer than 50°F), it’s possible that you could age Stentorian for more than 10 years—and at that point, it will have picked up sherry-like qualities. The biggest challenge will be waiting that long to enjoy drinking it!
For the first annual Seven Sisters Fest up in San Luis Obispo, we went all out.
Brian and Kelly drove up a few days early to nab a camping spot (and recharge a little! Opening a brewery was our dream… but wow, realizing a dream takes a lot out of you!).
We brought a record four beers to pour: for the summer heat, FIELDS ABLAZE Saison; for the hopheads, JERICHO IIPA; for the classy drinkers, bourbon-barreled OCTAVE; and for the experimental craft beer drinker, MOUNDS OF GROUNDS Imperial Black Espresso Saison.
Brian with high school pal Mike Downs, who helped pour at Seven Sisters Fest.
And we even nabbed a new volunteer to pour with Brian: his high school bud Mike Downs, who lives in Paso Robles. The guys hadn’t hung out together in 18 years!
As you can see, we were already working from a pretty solid foundation of awesomeness—but the fest itself took it to a whole new level. For Brian, it was basically a perfect event: being outside (in gorgeous 70° weather), listening to live music, serving beer, talking about beer, listening to other people talk about beer, trying other breweries’ beer, hanging with his pal during the day and relaxing with Kelly and the kids at night… (Wow–we’re making ourselves homesick! When can we go back?)
And the guests were awesome, too. We got such an excited response to all our beers, but especially OCTAVE—people went around telling their friends to come to the Valiant booth. And then those friends turned around and told us we had the best beers there! “This was a truly special moment for me,” Brian said. “People were impressed!”
Okay, we know OCTAVE is something special. It’s got all the attributes of a big barrel-aged beer, but at an easy-drinking 6.4% ABV. But it was pretty funny watching people try to wrap their heads around it!
Another highlight was talking to owners of new SLO breweries, hearing about their experiences during the first few months of being open and checking out their different styles of beer.
Seven Sisters was so well organized, it’s hard to believe this was the first year. It definitely won’t be the last—and it definitely won’t be the last time we pour there!
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