We’re excited to announce Fair Voyage — a farmhouse ale brewed with fireweed in collaboration with Jester King Brewery in Austin, TX. This past summer we did a lot of foraging but generally in small amounts for experimental batches. Fireweed was the exception. With this collaboration beer in mind we sought out an ingredient that was in season, available in abundance, sustainably harvested and easy to transport to Austin. Our friend and forager, Alex Harwell, first brought up the idea of using Fireweed in a beer.
We believe in creating beers made with a sense of place. One way we do this is through our unique mixed culture comprised of wild yeasts and bacteria. It Includes native cultures built up from Yarrow that was harvested in the Yakima wine region and Elderflowers from the Bastyr Campus and other wild cultures gathered near the Ballard Locks. We’ve created a unique flavor profile that simply cannot be replicated elsewhere.
Many businesses have a proprietary component - we have our mixed culture. For those who aren’t familiar with the term, think of it like a rustic sourdough starter compared to store bought yeast. It’s what we use to ferment all of our beers. In the starter there’s many different types of yeast working in harmony. Compared this to your store bought yeast which is a single laboratory isolated strain.
For a brewery, the act of drinking a beer can be not much more than swigging sweet nectar into your gullet. Not saying that’s necessarily a bad way to go, but it could be so much more. As mentioned, it could be pleasantly life-changing by the taste, the atmosphere you drink it in and the message behind the making process. The experience starts by how you hear about the brewery for the first time...
To get things started with Fair Isle, we brewed a batch of beer together at Jester King in November. We brewed a mixed culture farmhouse ale fermented in stainless steel with Washington Fireweed.