Rare Beer Club 6-Bottle Selections - June 2024

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Propolis - RBC Exclusive

Brasserie Dunham – Dunham, Québec, Canada

[Multi-Grain Honey Saison w/ Lemon Peel and Coriander - 5.2% ABV]

Wheatwine Ale (RBC Exclusive)

Brasserie Dunham was founded in June of 2011, and they've been making a major impact on the world beer scene ever since, having consistently been listed among the best two or three breweries in Canada in recent years. The brewery works with local farmers to source ingredients, and they're constantly tweaking the yeast blends for their wild beers and saisons, including testing out spontaneous fermentation and cultivating wild strains from the local air. The majority of what they produce is consumed in Quebec, with very little coming to the US, and mostly in kegs. We've really been looking forward to bringing these folks back into the club again, and this month we've got a beer imported to the US for the first time in five years - exclusively for Rare Beer Club members.

Propolis is a honey saison brewed with rye, wheat, and oats with a small amount of fall honey, lemon peel, and coriander. It's lightly hopped and fermented with Dunham's house blend of farmhouse ale yeasts and Brettanomyces. Hazy golden yellow and capped by dense foam, it offers up impactful aromatics of citrusy lemon peel, green apple, Anjou pear, honey, stone fruit, and lightly grassy elements from complex fermentation. The addition of coriander works seamlessly alongside the complex, lemony funk and phenolic elements. While light to medium in body, its flavor profile is much bigger. There's a lightly toasty malt bill, bringing forward the lemon peel and coriander elements and allowing the honey, stone fruit, apple, and pear aroma elements to play out as fresh flavors. There is then a fresh, lightly grassy, and herbaceous aspect that arises from the sprinkling of bittering hops, giving a nicely refreshing experience, with a long, dry finish.

Prodigal 2024 - RBC Exclusive

Perennial Artisan Ales – St. Louis, Missouri

[Imperial Milk Stout with Chocolate and Vanilla - 11.5% ABV]

Wild #3

Perennial Artisan Ales got its start in September 2011. This St. Louis brewery takes much of its influence from Belgian and American craft brewing cultures, and the focus from the beginning has been hand-crafted, small-batch releases that are built for the discerning beer geek. Perennial uses local, seasonal and organic fruit and other special ingredients as often as possible, while their barrel-aging program includes a wide range of wine and spirit barrels. We're thrilled to have been able to work with the team at Perennial to produce a beer especially for Rare Beer Club members. Prodigal (2024) is a revision of a beer brewed a few years ago under the same name, but Perennial has redesigned the recipe, and the beer now includes cacao nibs and vanilla.

Prodigal is packed with darkly roasted chocolate malts and is just loaded with vibrant chocolate and vanilla character throughout. For us, it's one of Perennial's best releases that is just so unique and well rendered it's tough to talk about any other chocolate-vanilla stout attempts without referencing this one. It's just that good. Pouring a deep, opaque black, this is impressively full-bodied. The aromatics here are deliciously rich and dominated by dark chocolate with hints of roasted coffee beans and the warmth of vanilla which enhances the overall complexity. The further we dive in, the more we discover - deeply roasted malts, caramelized brown sugar, dark earthy notes, and hints of dried black fruit. On the palate, Prodigal is velvety smooth, with layers of dark chocolate, bittersweet cocoa, and deeply roasted maltiness while the vanilla is not overpowering but provides a warm, slightly sweet undertone that balances the chocolate bitterness. Hints of licorice, toffee, leather, and dark brown sugar appear while subtle, tiny-bubbled carbonation provides some welcome lift, as does a touch of warming alcohol that gets tucked in seamlessly with the vanilla.

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