The Wild Beer Co was the first brewery in the UK to specialise in barrel-ageing, fermenting and maturing with wild yeasts.
With over 6 years’ experience behind us, we have honed our brewing, maturation and blending techniques to create year-round wild and sour beers with flavour, character and complexity.
In a craft beer market that is dominated by the next new thing, it’s sometimes nice to focus on beers that are practised, improved, learnt from and improved again. These are beers that are sold over and over again. We have over 120 red wine and bourbon barrels maturing Modus Operandi, a few that are about 3 years old. Each blend contains around 25 barrels, we liken it to putting together an orchestra; choosing the right barrels to layer flavours on to your palate, the high notes, the base notes, and the barrels that will lead to a crescendo of flavour.
Unusually we have a range of year-round barrel-aged beers, great examples of complex, intriguing drinks, as well as annual vintages of a number of beers that display seasonality, fruits, and the very best of the dark and light beers in our barrel library.
Sourdough is a beer we have been making for over 5 years, it is barrel-fermented with what was a 58-year-old sourdough culture. Our technique has evolved over time with this beer, we inoculate each new batch with barrels from previous batches, just like feeding a sourdough bread culture. For a 3.6% beer, it is packed with flavour and character, the acidity is similar to a farmhouse cider with all the flavour and a fraction of the alcohol.
Redwood is an annual vintage beer where we ferment the beer on fruit from the autumn hedgerow harvest, leave it to mature in oak barrels for a year and release it the following autumn. We have used many different fruits each year, some of our favourites have been plums, rosehips, blackberries, apples, sloes, mulberries, autumn raspberries and crab apples. The beer is red in colour, with beautiful fruity acidity, always nuanced towards one fruit or another. A firm team favourite.
2 of our favourite beers are annual vintages that are based around the very best from the 600 barrels in our library. The Blend is an annual vintage blended from the best pale sour beers that we have ageing, we blend different ages of beer together to create layers and complexity. Beyond Modus is a creative expression of our flagship beer Modus Operandi, trying different techniques, barrels or blending other beers into Modus. It’s a great expression of a dark sour beer, with different nuances depending on the blend or barrels.
Barrel-aged stouts have become firm favourites of ours, we annually release Wineybeest, a wine barrel expression of our imperial stout Wildebeest. The wine barrels provide a beautiful delicate vinous acidity to the rich stout. For the first time this year, we have created a blended stout B.A.B.S that is a blend of different stouts and different barrels, incredibly smooth, complex and layered. It’s become our highest ever rated beer, showing the love of stout in this country at the moment.