Bell's Brewery to Release Uberon, a Bourbon Barrel-Aged Version of Oberon, in 4-packs

Discussion in 'Beer News & Releases' started by ESHBG, Aug 24, 2021.

  1. ESHBG

    ESHBG Disciple (354) Jul 30, 2011 Pennsylvania

    BRIAN MANZULLO | DETROIT FREE PRESS | 5 hours ago

    With Oberon, the popular seasonal American wheat ale, heading into hibernation soon for the coming Michigan winter, Bell's Brewery — the Comstock-based Michigan beer giant that makes it — is preparing to ship its barrel-aged counterpart, Uberon, in four-packs for the first time starting next week, in limited distribution. It'll release at the Bell's General Store and Eccentric Cafe in Kalamazoo on Sept. 1.

    Uberon is basically Oberon, but aged in bourbon barrels. Clocking in at a hefty 11.3% alcohol by volume, it "tastes like our classic American Wheat Ale with a shot of bourbon dropped into it," Bell's says on its website. "It’s the perfect beer for a special summer moment or something to store away for those winter nights when you’re missing Oberon."

    https://amp.freep.com/amp/8245750002
     
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  2. Alefflicted

    Alefflicted Initiate (94) Dec 2, 2017 Minnesota

  3. MistaRyte

    MistaRyte Zealot (597) Jan 14, 2008 Virginia
    Trader

    Me too.
     
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  4. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,091) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I saw this story yesterday. To me, Oberon is just light, even delicate, of a beer to stand up to barrel aging.

    I predict it will be overpoweringly bourbon.
     
  5. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,628) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Yeah, but this beer is basically twice the ABV of Oberon... so they didn't just put regular Oberon in the barrels. They probably started with a much bigger beer. Bell's is really pushing brand extension heavily these days.
     
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  6. DIM

    DIM Poo-Bah (3,119) Sep 28, 2006 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Basically Oberon, but double the ABV? Might be good but not basically Oberon.
     
  7. GetMeAnIPA

    GetMeAnIPA Defender (684) Mar 28, 2009 California

    It has to be a different recipe. Oberon is 5% and this version is 11%. Can’t pick up that much abv from just barrel aging.

    not sure if you are aware as I wasn’t but per untapped the first uberon vintage was in 2017.
     
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  8. GetMeAnIPA

    GetMeAnIPA Defender (684) Mar 28, 2009 California

    Ha! I just typed that. Can’t be just the same beer but barrel aged.
     
  9. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,091) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I did see that, so how do they get away with saying it's "basically Oberon," when it's not?

    I don't even think a Heller Weizenbock would hold up to barrel aging. Just my palate, maybe, but heavier styles just seem better suited.
     
  10. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,628) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    It looks like that's the reporter's language, but Bell's is no better (from their website): "this batch of Oberon® headed to the barrel. Uberon is a bourbon barrel-aged version of our iconic American Wheat Ale." Just typical marketing poetic license in my eyes. At least it makes much more sense than "Bud Light Seltzer" when it comes to brand extension and logic.
    As far as "holding up" goes, think of this beer as no different than another craft brewer's "bourbon barrel aged wheatwine" rather than a more yeast driven Weizenbock (ugh, I hate typing the word wheatwine). But yeah, the beer isn't going to be for everyone. (bourbon barrel aging is a turn off for me)
     
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  11. Jaycase

    Jaycase Meyvn (1,432) Jan 13, 2007 Illinois
    Trader

    Yeah, looking at some older references (e.g 2015 Detroit Beer Festival, Bell's Eccentric Cafe tasting notes), can see Uberon referenced as 'Strong brewed Oberon aged in whiskey barrels'. Have seen Uberon at 9.7% and 10.3% in the past. This one goes to 11 :wink:
     
  12. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,091) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    For the sake of science, if I can find a single (and one of Double Two Hearted, while I'm at it) I'll take a chance.
     
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  13. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,118) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Chris, just curious: do you enjoy drinking bourbon?

    Cheers!
     
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  14. ESHBG

    ESHBG Disciple (354) Jul 30, 2011 Pennsylvania

    I'm impatiently waiting for the still large stack of DTH sixers to be broken down and placed in the mix a six section and I MAY spring for a four pack of this, as regular Oberon is decent (but as I think about it there's a chance that the flavors could clash).
     
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  15. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,628) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    I’d say that I enjoy drinking beer much, much more than bourbon… and that I enjoy drinking non-BBA beer much, much more than BBA beer. I don’t dislike bourbon and enjoy it whenever I have it, but I never purchase it for myself. What about you?
     
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  16. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,628) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Double Two Hearted is great for what it is… just go into it with the expectation that it’s a very big ale rather than a Two Hearted-ish beer. Do you like hoppy barley wines? I’ll also grab an Uberon single if I see one (probably not a 4 pack)… because of the brewer. I’d be more excited to find fresh Third Coast Old Ale than either of those, but that’s not where craft beer is at today.
     
  17. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,091) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I used to like Bigfoot, but usually only one at a sitting. :wink:
     
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  18. zac16125

    zac16125 Poo-Bah (2,281) Jan 26, 2010 South Carolina
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    Um, yeah, no.

    Upping the ABV to 11.3%. Did they forget to take the bourbon out of the barrels before putting the beer in to age?
     
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  19. elNopalero

    elNopalero Poo-Bah (4,088) Oct 14, 2009 California
    Society Trader

    WANT.

    Folks, don’t sleep on this. I had it on tap years ago, at the Eccentric Cafe, and it blew my mind.

    Part of it might have been my limited exposure to barrel aged beers at the time, but between those sips of Uberon and the cask Two Hearted Bells holds at least two of my most memorable beer drinking experiences.
     
  20. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,118) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    I am a fan of bourbon (and rye whiskey). I didn't like every bourbon barrel beer I have consumed but I have enjoyed the majority of them. More so for the flavors imparted by the oak vs. the bourbon I suspect.

    I have only brewed with bourbon/oak cubes once but I did enjoy that batch: I called it a Bourbon Barrel Porter but needless to say I was being liberal in my use of the term "barrel".

    Cheers!
     
  21. Squire

    Squire Poo-Bah (2,590) Jul 16, 2015 Mississippi
    Society Trader

    Sure, why not.
     
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  22. Jeffreysan

    Jeffreysan Savant (912) Apr 12, 2013 Virginia

    Me three!
     
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  23. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (7,852) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society

    A single would be nice.
     
  24. GetMeAnIPA

    GetMeAnIPA Defender (684) Mar 28, 2009 California

    yeah that’s what I am thinking. I could see this going either way so dropping a decent amount of money on it or even wanting to drink a full 4/6 pack might be a bit much.
     
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  25. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,759) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    From the OP it sounds like they just dropped a shot of bourbon into Oberon. :wink:
     
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  26. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,091) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Oberon boilermaker?
     
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  27. Squire

    Squire Poo-Bah (2,590) Jul 16, 2015 Mississippi
    Society Trader

    I can think of a number of things that would be improved by a shot of Bourbon.
     
  28. dennisthreeninefiveone

    dennisthreeninefiveone Initiate (111) Aug 11, 2020 New Jersey
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    Doubtful it will make it to NJ but if I see it I’ll try it.
     
  29. eagles22

    eagles22 Devotee (434) Sep 7, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Trader

    Why does bells push Oberon so much?
    The mango Oberon was a miss
     
  30. CBlack85

    CBlack85 Crusader (784) Jul 12, 2009 South Carolina
    Trader

    Not really a fan of Oberon, but I am curious to see how this bigger version holds up to the Bourbon Barrel treatment. On it's face, it seems that the beer will get lost in the barrel character.
     
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  31. officerbill

    officerbill Champion (815) Feb 9, 2019 New York
    Society Trader

    I think that might be what they're aiming for without calling it that.
    It would be interesting to see what size & style glassware they serve it in on site, that could give an idea of what Bell's considers Uberon to be.

    If it shows up here (yeah, right) I'll probably end up buying a pack.
     
  32. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,628) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Because they value it. It's one of their biggest successes and an extremely valuable asset in their brand identity.
    You can look at their website for their glassware recommendation and to see how Bell's is marketing the beer ("American wheat ale aged In bourbon barrels"). I don't know if there's really much to ponder though. Just add "strong" to the front of that and you basically have it all. :slight_smile:
     
  33. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,091) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Tasting Notes: Spicy.

    :thinking_face:
     
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  34. officerbill

    officerbill Champion (815) Feb 9, 2019 New York
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    A snifter, okay not bad, a slow sipper

    I was thinking the same thing
     
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  35. SteelCranium

    SteelCranium Initiate (102) Jul 1, 2010 Ohio

    Had it on tap four or five years ago at a tap takeover with almost 40 other bells brews. Was nothing like I expected. Tasted more like a strong Chardonnay than a barrel aged beer. Got into it after the initial surprise. Had it a year or two later with same results.
     
  36. Treyliff

    Treyliff Poo-Bah (4,944) Aug 10, 2010 West Virginia
    Society Trader

    How did they raise the abv by that much? Is this an imperial version or did the barrels add that much abv?
     
  37. crazyspicychef

    crazyspicychef Aspirant (283) Sep 27, 2012 Pennsylvania

    What's next, barrel aged seltzers?
    Give me a break already
     
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  38. Jaycase

    Jaycase Meyvn (1,432) Jan 13, 2007 Illinois
    Trader

    You're going to have to do better than that. :wink:

    [​IMG]
     
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  39. joerooster2

    joerooster2 Initiate (21) Aug 18, 2020 District of Columbia

    That's appealing to people? If so, just pour bourbon in your beer. Probably save a lot of money.
     
  40. Squire

    Squire Poo-Bah (2,590) Jul 16, 2015 Mississippi
    Society Trader

    Now that hadn't occurred to me but I wouldn't be totally surprised.