Birrificio Angelo Poretti - 6 Luppoli Bock Rossa
Serving Temperature:45-50° F
Suggested Glassware:Tulip, Willi Becher, Mug
Angelo Poretti brews this bock with a total of six different hop varieties, with Saaz as the most dominant. Pouring a deep reddish brown color topped by a cap of beige foam, the beer looks striking in the glass. On the nose, this one is quite complex, as we expect for a good bock. Deep notes of rich toast, caramel, and brown bread are shot through by some dried dark fruit character, all overlaid by a spicy hop note. This brew is as richly malty on the palate as on the nose, displaying layers and layers of toasted bread and deep caramelization, touches of molasses, some nuttiness, and a dash of treacle or licorice, all alongside a dark fruity impression suggestive of prune and fig. Despite the rich malty core and its corresponding sweet character, this bock comes across quite well-balanced for the style, as a good dose of hop bitterness with a spicy and almost woodsy or piney edge provides a good counterpoint, alongside a bit of alcohol bite that becomes a little more noticeable with warmth. For pairing options, your best bets are roasted or grilled meats and veggies. Pork tenderloin with gravy or venison with plum sauce come to mind. Burgers with aged swiss or cheddar and caramelized onions sound great too. Or, go decadent with chocolate cake with a drizzle of caramel. Cheers!
Angelo Poretti was born in 1833 in the town of Vedano Olona in northwestern Italy. For his work, he had the opportunity to travel to some of the greatest brewing regions in Europe including Austria, Bohemia, and Bavaria, where he met many brewers and learned much about the art of brewing. Having long dreamt of starting a brewery of his own, he was finaly able to manifest this vision in 1877. He built his brewery just a few miles from the Swiss border in the town of Induno Olona, in Varese, an area of Lombardy northwest of Milan. Not only was it close to the town of his birth, it was also blessed with extremely pure Alpine water, making for a perfect location for brewing operations.
In the early 1900s the brewery was expanded. Stuttgart, Germany’s Bihl and Woltz Architecture Studio was commissioned to design the buildings, and the result was a floral Art Nouveau style with an industrial twist, featuring large medallions, gargoyle-esque faces, faux embedded columns, and even bunches of hop flowers. These elements survive to this day on the brewery’s brewhouse building which dates to 1908 and is painted in an iconic yellow and grey scheme. The adjacent Villa Magnani, where you can visit the La Casa di Angelo pub to sample all of the brewery’s beers, dates to 1905 and was designed by Ulisse Stacchini, the architect of Milan’s central station, and is similarly decorated in a floral motif with medallions featuring Angelo Poretti’s initials. A visit to the Angelo Poretti brewery is truly a step back in time – a sort of Art Nouveau museum… with really good beer.
Moreso than many other traditional 100+ year old European breweries, Angelo Poretti is particularly focused on the use of varied hop varieties to create unique flavor identities. Most old European breweries tend to stick with one or two local hops, but not Poretti. All of their beers feature a prominent indication like “3 Luppoli”, “4 Hops”, etc. on the label, as a reference to the number of hop varieties used in its production. For the 2015 Expo Milan, they even produced a limited and very elegantly bottled “10 Luppoli” Bière de Champagne (a.k.a. Bière Brut) featuring ten hops from five different continents. The brewery embraces an array of hops from different regions, including traditional European varieties like Saaz, Strisselspalt, and Styrian Golding, British hops like East Kent Golding, American hops such as Zeus, Columbus, and Cascade, and even the lemony and herbal Sorachi Ace from Japan. The use of varied hops with varied characteristics really adds a rather unique quality to Angelo Poretti’s traditional beers; it’s one we enjoyed very much, and we hope you enjoy it too. Salute!
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