The Thirsty Beagle: Roughtail pushes envelope with Monkey Shines

Friday, September 25, 2015

Roughtail pushes envelope with Monkey Shines

The seventh annual ZooBrew beer tasting event is set for tonight, with tickets sold out and attendance pegged at more than 1,000 at the Oklahoma City Zoo.

One of the highlights of the night will be a special offering from Roughtail Brewing:

A couple years back, Roughtail produced a special beer for ZooBrew. The idea was to create a beer based in some way on plants or food consumed by animals at the zoo. The result was Bamboo IPA, a beer brewed using huge amounts of bamboo tea leaves.

Roughtail is revisiting the idea this year with a special IPA -- Monkey Shines IPA -- that features bananas.

So what is the beer all about? I checked in with Roughtail to get the scoop.

"We brewed a German Hefeweizen base beer with a large percentage of wheat malt, and hop-bursted it in the whirlpool with Citra and El Dorado hops," said Tony Tielli, Roughtail brewmaster. "(We) fermented it with a classic German Hefeweizen yeast strain to bring strong notes of banana and milder notes of cloves to the tropical fruit/citrus flavor and aroma of the hops. We finished it with a large dry hop of Citra and El Dorado."

And to really drive home the banana flavor, "We threw a bunch of bananas in after fermentation to really ramp up the banana-ness," Tielli said.

The beer will check in with a medium body and about 6% ABV, and I would expect it to go fast tonight.

It's hard to say in beer that someone's doing something that no one has done before, but I can say that this is an approach that I've not seen before. I'm curious to see how this beer turned out.

Moving on, how about a look at a whole bunch of new beer labels for our Oklahoma brewers?

September has seen several label approvals from federal regulators. Let's start with Elk Valley, where you will probably soon have a few options to look for at your local bar, including Pumpion Pumpkin Spiced Ale, low-point Oatmeal Stout and Sunset Saison:

Next, (405) Brewing of Norman is continuing to expand its line-up of packaged offerings. They are approved for labels for (405) Brown, described as a southern brown ale, and FDR imperial coffee stout:

Next is another offering from The Willows Family Ales, Heath Sweat Gose:

This next one is near and dear to my heart. Several years ago, I blogged about Beavers Bend Brewery, which is located in the Broken Bow area in McCurtain County. So far, Beavers Bend has been available only on tap at a few locations in the county, but it appears they are branching out some. They've just been approved for their first bottled offering, the low-point Fleucy Creek Pale Ale:

And lastly, looks like Mustang will re-introduce its winter seasonal, Winter Ale:

That's it for today. I'll be at ZooBrew tonight, so say hello if you spot me.

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