BrewDog Launches the World’s Strongest Beer

Reads 18319 • Replies 113 • Started Thursday, November 26, 2009 2:27:12 AM CT

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JamesBrewDog
02:27 Thu 11/26/2009

Watch the video here: http://www.brewdog.com/blog-article.php?id=214

The BrewDog team have pulled off our most audacious and ambitious project to date, and smashed a world record in the process. We have today, Thursday 26 November 2009, set a new world record after creating the strongest beer in the world. Weighing in at an ABV of 32%, BrewDog’s ‘Tactical Nuclear Penguin’ beats the previous record of 31% held by German beer brand Schorschbraer.

This beer is about pushing the boundaries, it is about taking innovation in beer to a whole new level. It is about achieving something which has never before been done and putting Scotland firmly on the map for progressive, craft beers.

This beer is bold, irreverent and uncompromising. A beer with a soul and a purpose. A statement of intent. A modern day rebellion for the craft beer proletariat in our struggle to over throw the faceless bourgeoisie oppression of corporate, soulless beer.’

The Antarctic name inducing schizophrenia of this uber-imperial stout originates from the amount of time it spent exposed to extreme cold. This beer began life as a 10% imperial stout 18 months ago. The beer was aged for 8 months in an Isle of Arran whisky cask and 8 months in an Islay cask making it our first double cask aged beer. After an intense 16 month, the final stages took a ground breaking approach by storing the beer at -20 degrees for three weeks to get it to 32%.

For the big chill the beer was put into containers and transported to the cold store of a local ice cream factory where it endured 21 days at penguin temperatures. Alcohol freezes at a lower temperature than water. As the beer got colder BrewDog Chief Engineer, Steven Sutherland decanted the beer periodically, only ice was left in the container, creating more intensity of flavours and a stronger concentration of alcohol for the next phase of freezing. The process was repeated until it reached 32%.

Beer has a terrible reputation in Britain, it’s ignorant to assume that a beer can’t be enjoyed responsibly like a nice dram or a glass of fine wine. A beer like Tactical Nuclear Penguin should be enjoyed in spirit sized measures. It pairs fantastically with vanilla bean white chocolate it really brings out the complexity of the beer and complements the powerful, smoky and cocoa flavours.

A warning on the label states: This is an extremely strong beer, it should be enjoyed in small servings and with an air of aristocratic nonchalance. In exactly the same manner that you would enjoy a fine whisky, a Frank Zappa album or a visit from a friendly yet anxious ghost.

In typical BrewDog style the beer comes packed not in an elaborate box or case, but a brown paper bag with a hand-drawn penguin on it. You can buy yours here: http://www.brewdog.com/product.php?id=46

James, BrewDog

 
nate2g
beers 1548 º places 1290 º 02:38 Thu 11/26/2009

All I can say is...Wow!

 
rusty
beers 1547 º places 12 º 02:59 Thu 11/26/2009

ISO!!

 
SilkTork
beers 6441 º places 104 º 03:00 Thu 11/26/2009

I’m curious about this, and other such beers which are distilled. Beer is a fermented product, when distillation takes place it technically ceases to be a beer and becomes something else, such as whiskey or some other spirit.

There is the tradition of Eisbock, which we have long embraced as part of the beer family, and it would be appropriate to keep that tradition - but at what point would we say that a freeze-distilled beer leaves the Eisbock tradition behind and becomes a spirit/liquor?

 
cgarvieuk
beers 31126 º places 446 º 03:05 Thu 11/26/2009

Originally posted by SilkTork
I’m curious about this, and other such beers which are distilled. Beer is a fermented product, when distillation takes place it technically ceases to be a beer and becomes something else, such as whiskey or some other spirit.

There is the tradition of Eisbock, which we have long embraced as part of the beer family, and it would be appropriate to keep that tradition - but at what point would we say that a freeze-distilled beer leaves the Eisbock tradition behind and becomes a spirit/liquor?


yeah. but if it produces a distinct product then that alone will be interesting

 
Trappistenbier
beers 52 º places 4 º 03:20 Thu 11/26/2009

Originally posted by SilkTork
I’m curious about this, and other such beers which are distilled.

I’m afraid Belgium has beaten the 32vol% record already on several occasions.
Gouden Carolus Single Malt, Armand Spirit, Bierblomme, Duvel Distilled, etc...
All 40% by volume and made with he beer as basis.

Cheers,
Filip

 
SilkTork
beers 6441 º places 104 º 03:35 Thu 11/26/2009

Originally posted by cgarvieuk
Originally posted by SilkTork
I’m curious about this, and other such beers which are distilled. Beer is a fermented product, when distillation takes place it technically ceases to be a beer and becomes something else, such as whiskey or some other spirit.

There is the tradition of Eisbock, which we have long embraced as part of the beer family, and it would be appropriate to keep that tradition - but at what point would we say that a freeze-distilled beer leaves the Eisbock tradition behind and becomes a spirit/liquor?


yeah. but if it produces a distinct product then that alone will be interesting



Interesting no doubt, and by the sounds of it quite tasty for those who like strong beers. But, for example, we don’t class whiskey as a beer, even though it starts off as a fermented beer, and is then distilled. I’m just wondering where (and if) we draw a line. We already have a number of beers on the site which were made using the same technique that BrewDog have used - Hair of the Dog Dave is a famous example - so we would accept it on the database. However, I am just opening for discussion the notion that perhaps we should think about the point at which we feel a beer has actually become a spirit.

 
SilkTork
beers 6441 º places 104 º 03:45 Thu 11/26/2009

Originally posted by Trappistenbier
Originally posted by SilkTork
I’m curious about this, and other such beers which are distilled.

I’m afraid Belgium has beaten the 32vol% record already on several occasions.
Gouden Carolus Single Malt, Armand Spirit, Bierblomme, Duvel Distilled, etc...
All 40% by volume and made with he beer as basis.

Cheers,
Filip



All those were heat distilled, and so they are accepted as not being beer. My quibble is to do with freeze distilling. Beers which are freeze distilled are still called beer, even though the end result is similar to heat distilling. And that is largely because we have the Eisbock tradition - and also because we have no other tradition of freeze-distilling beer to make an identifiable product.

Heat distill beer = whiskey. That’s a given.

Freeze distill a beer = Eisbock. That’s a given.

Freeze distill a beer more than once. Hmmmm = "Strongest beer in the world" - until someone comes along and makes a stronger freeze-distill...

I’m uncomfortable with this notion of continually freeze-distilling a beer until it becomes "the strongest beer in the world", as I think it is longer a "beer".

 
Borresteijn
beers 8849 º places 340 º 03:49 Thu 11/26/2009

Originally posted by SilkTork
Originally posted by Trappistenbier
Originally posted by SilkTork
I’m curious about this, and other such beers which are distilled.

I’m afraid Belgium has beaten the 32vol% record already on several occasions.
Gouden Carolus Single Malt, Armand Spirit, Bierblomme, Duvel Distilled, etc...
All 40% by volume and made with he beer as basis.

Cheers,
Filip



All those were heat distilled, and so they are accepted as not being beer. My quibble is to do with freeze distilling. Beers which are freeze distilled are still called beer, even though the end result is similar to heat distilling. And that is largely because we have the Eisbock tradition - and also because we have no other tradition of freeze-distilling beer to make an identifiable product.

Heat distill beer = whiskey. That’s a given.

Freeze distill a beer = Eisbock. That’s a given.

Freeze distill a beer more than once. Hmmmm = "Strongest beer in the world" - until someone comes along and makes a stronger freeze-distill...

I’m uncomfortable with this notion of continually freeze-distilling a beer until it becomes "the strongest beer in the world", as I think it is longer a "beer".


Unlike with heat-distilling, there is a limit to what can be done with freeze-distilling, if I’m correct. And it’s all a matter of definition.

 
Trappistenbier
beers 52 º places 4 º 03:49 Thu 11/26/2009

>>Heat distill beer = whiskey. That’s a given.
>>Freeze distill a beer = Eisbock. That’s a given.

both techniques remove "water". Apart from the temperatures, I don’t see any difference
Cheers,
Filip

 
Borresteijn
beers 8849 º places 340 º 03:59 Thu 11/26/2009

Originally posted by Trappistenbier
>>Heat distill beer = whiskey. That’s a given.
>>Freeze distill a beer = Eisbock. That’s a given.

both techniques remove "water". Apart from the temperatures, I don’t see any difference
Cheers,
Filip


You need a licence for heat-distilling and you don’t need one for icing.
And like I said, it’s all a matter of definition.