Eclipse Porter––A Beer as Rare and Stunning as the Astronomical Event for which It’s Named
As everyone anxiously awaits the upcoming total solar eclipse, we’ve put our time to good use crafting our first Baltic Porter to celebrate. Viewing a solar eclipse requires special protective eyewear. Drinking a pint of our new porter does not. Optimal viewing of the upcoming eclipse may require a drive on busy roads to a nearby (or not so near) location. Our porter will be available down at your local (and wherever the finest local craft beers are served). The maximum duration of totality for the upcoming eclipse is less than three minutes. The duration of your pint of Baltic Porter is … well, that’s up to you.
Baltic Porter is a variation on standard English porter originating in the 18th century. A great deal of porter was being shipped from England to the Baltic States. Much of this porter was destined for Russia. Rumor has it that Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia, consumed the lion’s share of it herself (she must have been as strong as a horse). It is indisputable that a sharp uptake in Russia’s consumption of porters and stouts coincided with the so-called golden age of the Russian Empire.
Shipping all that porter from England was inconvenient and expensive, though. Soon, Baltic brewers decided they could make a version at least as good themselves. The style was not as intensely roasty as a stout, but had a profound maltiness. The brewers used their native lager yeast and an English-inspired grain bill along with the latest German and Danish brewing techniques.
The hops were Saaz type varieties, with nice spiciness but the not the woodsy characteristics of English hops. Some versions were somewhat sweet, others dry. The roasted malt had complex notes of licorice, chocolate, and dried fruit.
We based our Eclipse Porter on our English porter, but used a lager yeast strain and weeks of cold conditioning. We replaced English Maris Otter with Viking malt, sourced from the Baltic region. Sterling hops marry the best of Saaz with more complex aromatics and give our beer a layered spice, with notes of candied citrus and grass.
This is a long-awaited beer with our signature balance and plenty of flavor. Enjoy safely without ISO-certified eyewear. Or don any glasses you want for the occasion. Drink it in the path of totality and achieved total contentment. Cheers!
The Civil Blog has returned. It is predominantly authored by Civil Life Barman, Dr. Patrick Hurley, who can be found tending to our bar patrons on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. He is also responsible for tending to our draft lines, which is recognized as one of our most important tasks. Special guest writers will appear from time to time. We hope reading this blog will give you much insight about the Civil Life and most importantly help you understand a bit more about all of us that work here and the beers we put our hearts into.