pant loads of Big Bad Baptist to discuss. Not known for sitting on their laurels the kids at Epic have been busy over the past year creating two new incarnations of the most coveted of Utah beers.
First let's get into Double Barrel Big Bad Baptist. Hotbox Coffee Rosters out of Longmont Colorado has a unique process for some of their coffees in which they take their green coffee beans and age them in used spirit barrels. The bean soak up the aromas and flavors of their environment. If you put them in a used whiskey barrel, you’ll get notes of toffee, vanilla, oak, and campfire alongside the beans natural fruity and roasted flavors.
Epic selected Hotbox's single origin Ethopian Yirgacheffe for its bright blueberry and pomegranate flavors. It’s a major departure from the classic Columbian and Central American flavor profile Epic normally selects for Big Bad Baptist. With the additional flavor contribution from the whiskey barrel and Hot Box’s carful roasting, the coffee comes to the forefront of the beer and really showcases the unique process.
Double Barrel Big Bad uses equally creative and maliciously crafted cacao nibs from Solstice Chocolate - a small artisan chocolate maker based out of Salt Lake City. They specialize in sourcing exotic, organically grown cacao from around the world. Each single origin cacao is roasted in house to bring out its inherent characteristics. I'll be sure to let you know when Dbl Barrel Big Bad hits SLC.
Next up is Big Bad Baptista. Inspired by traditional Mexican coffee, Café de Olla, which is served with cinnamon and piloncillo, an unrefined sugar. The Cinnamon adds another layer of complexity and accentuates the earthy character of Mexican Coffee, but more importantly, it captures the essence of a place and its culture. As beverage geeks we wanted to pay homage to that rich tradition and offer our unique take.
Big Bad Baptista is a combination of Vanilla, Cinnamon, Mexican coffee roasted by Blue Copper, and Solstice Chocolate cacao nibs. It’s luxurious to say the least, with a pleasant warming sensation generated by the cinnamon and alcohol. The interplay of chocolate, malt, oak, and spice make this beer perfect for the coming cold weather months. Stay close for news on this release.
You've probably already had a chance to get to know this year's release Big Bad Baptist. This incarnation features three coffee roasters, Blue Copper Coffee from Salt Lake City, Novo Coffee based in Denver, and Dark Horse Coffee out of San Diego. We’ve worked with each roaster to select a coffee blend that enhances the flavor profile of the Imperial Stout coming out of the cask.
From Blue Copper, Epic featured their Mexican & Guatemalan Blend as well as a batch with their El Salvador Blend. We worked closely with the roasters at Blue Copper to fine tune these coffees to accentuate the fruity notes found in both the roasted barley and cacao nibs with hits of Bergamot, Cardamom, and under ripe stone fruit.
For the Novo Coffee Edition, they take their espresso blend, Ethiopia, Columbia, and Panama origins, just a little darker than normal to highlight rich notes of milk chocolate, caramel toffee, and blueberry which play wonderfully with the vanilla and toasted marshmallow flavors from the whiskey casks.
A new partner for Epic this season is Dark Horse Coffee from San Diego and they’re roasting some pronominal coffee. After tasting through their lineup Epic decided their “Best Friend Blend” was well suited to Big Bad Baptist. The blend is a combination of Guatemalan and Brazilian origins which offers a rich chocolate flavor and toasted nut aroma to the beer, similar to toffee or Christmas peanut brittle.
Big Bad Baptist is on its way across the country now and will be appearing on shelves during October. Double Barrel Big Bad Baptist and Big Bad Baptista will follow shortly with releases in November. Be sure to look for 2016 Rare Release labels and don’t forget to grab an extra for the cellar.
Technically, I guess this means there's six new BBBs coming. Cool!