There’s something to be said for history. While some may think it’s bunk, the rest of us know that we need to learn it or be doomed to repeat it.
When it comes to barrel-aging beer, it’s not so much being doomed to repeat it, it’s more like hoping we get something close to repeating it.
You see, when you barrel age a beer, it changes the beer, certainly, but it also changes the barrels. There’s an exchange: the barrel’s character seeps into the beer, and the beer gives a little bit of itself back.
It’s a dance. It’s symbiotic.
So, while the newest in our Barrel Aged Series, Fleetingly Anchored, was racked in the same barrels that held the first critically-acclaimed release in that series, The Keel, as well as Beer Connoisseur’s Best Beer of 2017, The Topsail, things are different now. Things have changed. Those beers have irrevocably changed those barrels.
Yet, those beaten up, used, oaken red wine barrels hold the history of what came before. They carry a bit of The Keel and The Topsail with them.
We know that we can’t repeat the past.
However, we’re going to have to take the advice of Jay Gatsby on this one. “Can’t repeat the past?” he’d cry incredulously. “Why of course you can!”