Pilot Brewing System Officially Launched

After nearly a year of scheming, remodeling and patience, the Pilot System has officially launched at Altitude.  A big thanks to everyone who showed up for the official release party – if the amount of beer consumed is any indication, a good time was had by many.

Several exciting pilot-related developments that I wanted to let everyone in on:

1)    One of my goals for the pilot system was to pursue bottling some of the beers that come off of the system.  There are several reasons for this, among them: a) some beer styles (e.g, Belgian styles, Barleywines, high gravity beers) benefit from bottle refermentation and aging, b) many of our patrons want to take our beer with them, and c) bottling certain beers allows us to monitor their maturation.  To that end, we have completed our first bottling run.  The first beer bottled was “Mary Magdalene,” a Belgian Golden Strong Ale coming in at just under 8% ABV.  I’ve received a lot of questions regarding when bottles will be available, and the short answer is: we don’t know quite yet.  I would anticipate some releases before the year is out; stay tuned for more details.

2)    I’ve brought in our first collaborator on the pilot system, a very talented local home brewer by the name of Nathan Fleming.  Nathan and I came up with a beer to showcase a really fantastic malt out of the UK (Golden Promise) and used a large amount of New Zealand hops (Nelson Sauvin) to create a beer that should be perfect for the warmer weather ahead.  The beer doesn’t have a name yet; it will be released sometime later this month.

3)    To pay tribute to my Californian heritage – and one of the coolest pieces of architecture in the world – I’ll be releasing a Golden Gate Bridge tribute beer on the anniversary of the Golden Gate’s official opening (May 27th).  It’ll be a fitting tribute: California Common Ale (a style made famous by San Francisco’s Anchor Steam Brewery).  This beer was made with a hybrid lager/ale yeast strain, is hopped with a distinctly woodsy-flavored variety and will match the color of the Golden Gate Bridge.  

That’s all for now.  Hope to see you soon at Altitude.