What is High Octane Beer?

William Hock By William Hock, 17th Oct 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/143r1kyz/
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Food

If you ever wonder what high octane beer is, this is a quick summary.

Hige Octane Beer Explained

Have you heard the term “high octane” beer and wondered what exactly one is? We’ve been curious ourselves and started asking people in the craft beer business. While it is widely understood that they have a higher than normal alcohol content, just what is the threshold level of alcohol to be considered high octane?
According to Joseph Tucker of RateBeer, there still is no concrete definition. He adds that it is also culturally dependent. For example, England considers any beer with a 5.5% alcohol by volume to be high. Whereas at RateBeer, they consider anything with a 7% alcohol by volume to be the starting point for high octane beers.
Some of our favorite high octane beers come from Weyerbacher Brewing in Easton, Pennsylvania. Their office and tasting room manager, Bill Bragg, considers 8% alcohol by volume to be where “high octane” begins. He also observes that this is becoming the new “normal”, which is fine by us! Let’s start with their “Blithering Idiot”.
Weyerbacher “Blithering Idiot” Barleywine – Made in the traditional English Barleywine style, this beer strikes a nice balance of sweet maltiness and subtle hops. At 11.1% alcohol by volume, this beer has a long, warm finish. Pairs well with hearty meats and cheeses, but also works well as an after dinner drink, possible served in a snifter.
Gulden Draak – This is a Belgian, dark triple and comes in with a 10.5% alcohol by volume. It has been made in the Belgian town of Gent for centuries, and delivers a nice toffee flavor with just a hint of hops. Belgian Triples and English Barleywines are similar in that they us extra malts to achieve their higher alcohol levels.
French Broad Wee-Heavy-er Scotch Ale – Brewed in Asheville, North Carolina, which was voted as the best craft beer city in America. Wee-Heavy-er is a Scotch ale brewed with a lot of dark, toasty malts and has a nice, sweet caramel flavor with a smoky edge.


Beer, Beer Brewing, Beer Drinking, Beers, Craft Beer

Meet the author

author avatar William Hock
Attended a small, liberal arts college that stressed writing. I have been in the wine business for over 20 years.

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author avatar Bloodyfuneral
25th Oct 2013 (#)

Nice work. Did you know that Bulgarian rotgut beer can have up to 15%?

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author avatar William Hock
25th Oct 2013 (#)

No, I'll have to check that out. By calling it rotgut, does that mean it isn't very good?

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