Name: Epic Brewing Company
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Available in DC Market: Yes
What you need to know: In the past, craft beer fans who found themselves in Utah could be excused for looking east to Colorado for some sustenance . Epic is steadily changing that (with the help of some compatriots). Since 2008, founders David Cole and Peter Erickson have brought their Californian sensibilities to bear on Beehive State brewing. They profess a “strong belief in doing everything ‘all out’”, and it shows in their SAVOR submissions.
Beer #1: Brainless on Peaches (Belgian-style fruit ale / 10.7%)
Notes: Here’s how Epic describes BoP: “We took our double gold medal winning Brainless® Belgian, added organic peach puree and aged it in French Chardonnay casks from Sawtooth Winery.” The peaches show strong in the nose – think Fuzzy Peaches candy – but the taste is classic Belgian golden, with only a hint of fruit lingering in the shadows. The way this one hides its double digit ABV is downright sneaky.
Beer Advocate: 81 (84 reviews)
Rate Beer: 94 overall, 86 style (148 ratings)
Beer #2: Smoked and Oaked (Belgian-style strong dark ale / 9.5%)
Notes: Epic writes, “Smoked cherry wood malt brings a smoky sweetness to the caramel malts and a bit of peat flavor with a Belgian-style yeast. The entire batch aging in the whiskey barrels nicely dries out the perceived sweetness of the caramel malt leaving an almost scotch like taste.” You had me at “smoked cherry wood”. The Belgian yeast adds fruity esters to the malts’ caramel and toffee and the oak’s vinous booziness. A cold weather beer if ever there was one.
Beer Advocate: 86 (45 reviews)
Rate Beer: 97 overall, 95 style (105 reviews)
Summary: While Epic’s SAVOR offerings won’t appeal to everyone, they do live up to their “go big or go home” mantra. Cheers to them for pulling out all the stops – and for helping to slowly bring Utah into the craft beer fold.
This profile is a part of the DCBEER.COM SAVOR Brewery Profile series. For more information, follow the link to see profiles of all 2012 SAVOR participants.
Beer Review Disclaimer: The beer reviews found on Beer Advocate and Rate Beer do not represent the opinions of this site. We provide these in the hope that they will serve as a resource showing what some craft beer fans have thought of the beers. These reviews can be a helpful guideline, but are not the be-all end-all about a beer’s strengths or weaknesses.