(I don’t get to do articles like this very often, so I’m a little excited.)
Sunday, April 8th is going to be a busy, fun day at Lauderale. For starters, it’s a Sunday, which means jazz Sunday brunch, a happening I feel a bit foolish for not knowing was a thing. It’s also going to be their first Farmers Market, set up in conjunction with one of their food truck regulars. There will be a lot of local artisans and wares, so it should be some good shopping.
On top of all of that, this Sunday marks the release of their first bottle in the Shipwreck Series, a new line of limited edition release beers. Each beer is going to be a rare, ultra limited, ultra special version of one of their core beers according to Lauderale’s co-owner/brewmaster Kyle Jones. Those beers will also each be named for a different wreck off the coast of Broward County
The first release is named after the SS Copenhagen (Russian Imperial Stout, 12.5% ABV, 75 IBU), a steamer that sank just off Pompano Beach in the early 1900’s. It was delivering a load of coal from New England bound for Cuba (back when we actually did that) and sank in waters shallow enough to become a destination for Florida’s wreck divers.
Before moving on to the beer itself, I should mention the bottles, since they’re one of the few that I am actually going to keep. Apart from the awesome artwork, they’re one of the few bottled coming from the Sunshine State that have the artwork printed directly on the bottle itself, not a label that was then applied. Kyle told me he hand-labeled every bottle for their last release and immediately swore ‘never again.` Because of that, you get a bottle whose actual bottle is quite the collectors piece, ready for a shelf somewhere.
Once you’ve drained the bottle, of course. That, nicely enough, is the easy part. Copenhagen is Lauderale’s Rapture of the Deep Russian Imperial Stout which has been aging away in Buffalo Trace Bourbon barrels for the past year. And somehow, Lauderale managed to create what might literally be my favorite barrel-aged RIS. Of all time.
With your average, run of the mill insanely deep aged beer, it’s easy to get these huge malt bombs that have the consistency of frozen molasses and an overly boozy kick like a juiced-up mule. With Copenhagen, you don’t get that at all. It is incredibly smooth and soft, with a color just this side of completely black and a thick, creamy head.
Flavor-wise, there’s a good amount of dark cacao, roasted coffee, and chewy brown sugar notes swimming around with a malt base reminiscent of overbaked bread without the charring. All of that gorgeous bourbon barrel aging did not go to waste, with a respectful and meaty bourbon quality adrift and marinating in all of the other wonderful notes the beer contains.
If you want to experience all of this, you need to act fast. 200 bottles go on sale for $25 each starting at 11 AM on the 8th. With all of the live entertainment, shopping, and beers to be had, waiting in line to get a little SS Copenhagen shouldn’t be difficult at all.
And you don’t need SCUBA equipment, either.
Drink Florida Craft,