Vermont Business Magazine After spending much of his first year getting to know his new home state, Magic Hat’s brewery manager, Robert Kuntz, has accidentally made a lot of new friends. In his off time, Kuntz hiked and biked across the state, exploring Vermont’s many homegrown goods, from wineries to farms, and meeting the proprietors of each. As a result of these gregarious gatherings and newly forged friendships, Magic Hat is announcing the beginning of the Accidental Friends Project: a series of Vermont-only beers featuring the foods and flavors of Vermont-made products.
Introducing Two Must-Have Hybrids
The first two beers in the Accidental Friends Project are wine-beer hybrids, created with help from two esteemed Vermont wineries, Snow Farm Vineyard of South Hero Island and Shelburne Vineyards of Shelburne. Never one to offer a lack of selection, Magic Hat has chosen both a red and a white grape for these releases:
Vignoles (white) – Vignoles grape must – the juice created after pressing the fruit – from Snow Farm Vineyard was co-fermented with a Magic Hat beer featuring American hops to produce big pineapple flavor and aroma. This beer is bright and fruity, with pineapple dominating and dried apricot in the background. The Vignoles grape must lends a bright stone fruit acidity to this delicious small-batch brew. It weighs in at 8.5% ABV, 15 IBUs and pairs best with grilled fish and charcuterie.
Petite Pearl (red) - This beer blends Petite Pearl red grape must from Shelburne Vineyards with a spicy rye and wheat beer from Magic Hat. An off-dry sweetness is balanced against a palate of barely-there tannins, noble hops and mild grape acidity. This hybrid starts with rye spice and red grape must and is followed by a raspberry and strawberry finish. Petite Pearl is fermented with Kuntz’s proprietary wine yeast, cultured from the Front Range of Colorado. It comes in at 9.4% ABV, 15 IBUs and pairs best with local steak or a hot Reuben sandwich.
Vignoles and Petite Pearl are both extremely limited in quantity and will be draught-only at Magic Hat’s Artifactory and at select bars and restaurants in Vermont starting February 9, 2018. There will also be a launch day happy hour celebration hosted by Magic Hat and both wineries that afternoon from 4-6pm at the Magic Hat Artifactory. More details on the event are available on Magic Hat’s Facebook page.
Magic Hat has accidentally befriended many more local businesses, including Fisher Brothers Farm in Shelburne, which has generously supplied gallons of elderberry juice for an upcoming Elderberry Saison. Future releases are expected and will be announced as they are ready.
Source: Magic Hat Brewing Company & Performing Arts Center WWW.MAGICHAT.NET