New Belgium Brewing (Fort Collins, Colorado) has officially announced that it will begin the incredibly limited release of La Folie Grand Reserve: PX on February 9.
Inspired by “a love of dessert wines”, La Folie Grand Reserve: PX – the latest small batch version of New Belgium’s award-wining La Folie – was created with the use of “20 sought-after sherry barrels, each previously holding PX Sherry.” If you are unfamiliar with this particular sherry, the “PX” references “Pedro Ximénez, a white Spanish wine grape varietal grown under intense sun to produce the super sweet, unctuous Pedro Ximénez Sherry with flavors of figs, molasses, roasted nuts and exotic spices.” After La Folie’s dark base beer and New Belgium’s house culture matured in these barrels for nine months, the sherry barrel-aged base beer was infused with “400 whole, hand-split Tahitian vanilla beans . . . for four months, swirled every day to intensify the combination of vanilla’s sweetness with existing fig, sour plum and cocoa flavors.” Once this laborious process was completed, the finished La Folie Grand Reserve: PX (8% ABV) was “bottled and kegged on a gentle amount of nitrogen, a unique technique unusual for wood-aged sour beers, providing a smooth and velvety mouthfeel that elevates the entire drinking experience.”
“When I set out to make Grand Reserve, I feel like I’m taking La Folie to the prom or on a once-in-a-lifetime luxury vacation. It has to be very special,” explained Lauren Woods Limbach, New Belgium’s wood cellar director and blender. “La Folie is already so brilliant and complex. What I look for is the spaces in between and imagine what we could introduce to fill in those flavor gaps. The dried, stewed fruit of PX Sherry promised to elevate La Folie to a new level.”
“It was an absolute labor of love. We were very meticulous throughout the process, sort of like helicopter parents/brewers. You really only get one shot at it,” Limbach continued, noting the limited availability of fresh sherry casks. “This recipe started in my head about two years ago. It always feels a little magical when the end result matches such high expectations.”
La Folie Grand Reserve: PX officially releases on Saturday, February 9 and will hang around as long as supplies last. You can expect to find this Limited Release offering available in 375ml bottles and on draft at select craft beer-focused establishments located “in select markets in the states of Colorado, North Carolina, California, Hawaii, Missouri, Arizona, Nebraska, Iowa, Texas, Washington, Oregon, Minnesota, Illinois, Idaho, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.” Prost!
Vital Information for La Folie Grand Reserve: PX from New Belgium Brewing
Release – Limited; February 9, 2019
Style – American Sour Ale
ABV – 8%
Treatment – Aged for nine months in Pedro Ximénez Sherry barrels; infused with 400 whole, hand-split Tahitian vanilla beans for an additional four months
Availability – 375ml bottles & draft
Distribution – Select markets in Colorado, North Carolina, California, Hawaii, Missouri, Arizona, Nebraska, Iowa, Texas, Washington, Oregon, Minnesota, Illinois, Idaho, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts