I really liked the A&E editor at Willy Week when I came on board. Then there was a schism. Then a new guy was hired and we got back into bed together. Me & the alt-weekly, not the new dude. It started with this post on Belgian-style Hair of the Dog going to Belgium.
For the last five years, much-decorated Belgian brewmaster Dirk Naudts, who develops beer recipes for brewers throughout Holland and Belgium, brings an American brewer over to his village, Lochristi, to collaborate. The chance to work with Naudts at his Na De Proef Brouwerij is much sought—beer writer Michael Jackson once described Naudts’ ultrasophisticated brewhouse as “the ultimate toy for the aspiring homebrewer.”
This year the honor goes to a Portlander, Alan Sprints from Hair of the Dog.
Sprints is the first Pacific Northwesterner to get the honor. Other brewers selected have come from San Diego’s Lost Abbey, Michigan’s Bell’s and Maine’s Allagash.
SBS Imports founder Alan Shapiro says the beer will be a blend of quintessential Hair of the Dog Fred—a Strong Ale named in honor of local beer guru Fred Eckhardt
—named Flanders Fred
, a reference to the Flanders Red
beer style dubbed “Burgundies of Belgium.”
Expect the result to pack a tart cherry sourness and bone-warming boozy heat. It’ll be perfect for aging, too. Too bad we won’t get to try it until this summer, as Sprints won’t actually brew the batch of Fred in Belgium until March. The collaboration beer should first see release through the former Michael Jackson Rare Beer Club
in June, with full U.S. release in July.
Luckily, the collaboration partner’s home state always receives the largest allocation.
Plus other PDX beer news…