Jester King Craft Brewery

Colonel Toby Batch 2

15 December 2017


Today we’re releasing our second batch of Colonel Toby, our collaboration with The Kernel Brewery in London, England. We call Colonel Toby “a hoppy little farmhouse ale”, because…well…it’s really just that. We love making beers that are either dry and tart, or dry and bitter, and Colonel Toby definitely falls into the latter category.

So how do we go about making beers that fall into these two general categories? Not to over simplify things, because mixed culture fermentation constantly throws us surprises, but for the beers we want to present dry and bitter, we brew with more hops and ferment warmer (78F and above) in a stainless steel tank for a relatively short period of time (a few weeks). The pH of the beer at packaging is usually above 4.0. By contrast, the beers we commit to oak are hopped at lower rates and go through a long, slow maturation at cellar temp (around 60F). They typically end up around 3.4 pH and have perceivable acidity.

As we’ve mentioned before, our inspiration stems equally from breweries like Brasserie de la Senne and Brasserie De Ranke, who make wonderfully elegant beer that’s dry and bitter, as well as from breweries like Jolly Pumpkin and Cantillon, who make spectacular beer that’s more acid-driven. Sometimes this gets forgotten in the shadow of our barrel aged fruit refermentations and our 100% spontaneously fermented beers, which is fine. We get pretty excited too about blending the worlds of wine and beer through our use of fruit, or making beer without even pitching yeast using a coolship (which is still pretty magical to us). But sometimes it’s fun to remind people that a major part of our roots came from drinking beers like De Ranke XX Bitter, De la Senne Taras Boulba, and Dupont Avril.

Anyhow, we hope you enjoy this year’s Colonel Toby! It really is just a simple little hoppy beer, which we hope is befitting of The Kernel Brewery and all the wonderful work they’re doing.


Jeff Stuffings

Colonel Toby Batch 2 was brewed on October 16th and 17th with well water, Crisp Maris Otter, rolled oats, Cascade hops, and fermented in stainless steel with our mixed culture of brewers yeast and native yeast and bacteria. Prior to packaging on November 20th and 21st, it was dry hopped with Citra and Centennial. Colonel Toby is 3.0% alcohol by volume, 54 IBU, 4.4 pH, and has a finishing gravity of 1.001 (0.25 Plato).

It will be released on Friday, December 15th at 4pm at our tasting room and will be available by the glass and in bottles to go (750ml/$9). We have about 6,000 bottles available. There’s no bottle limit, and it will be distributed beyond Jester King by our friends at Flood Independent Distribution. Art by Josh Cockrell. Photography by Tyler Malone / Second Shooter.






Introducing 2017 SPON — Syrah & Sangiovese

13 December 2017

LR--3 (1)

This Friday at 4pm, we’ll be releasing a new fruit refermented spontaneous blend called 2017 SPON — Syrah & Sangiovese!

The Texas wine grape harvest this year was really good to us, and we’ve been able to experiment with a number of different grapes and combinations of grapes in our fermentations. For this blend, we added 500 lbs. of Syrah grapes from northeast Texas and 500 lbs. of Sangiovese grapes from Midland, Texas to eighteen month old 100% spontaneously fermented beer from our 2016 coolship season.

We chose these two particular grape varietals due to the contrasting nature of the fruit. According to our Head Brewer Averie Swanson, “We wanted to create a blend that exhibited the darker fruit and pepper notes of the Syrah with the brighter cherry and more perfumey character of the Sangiovese. The eighteen month old SPON lent an underlying funky canvas that held space for the expression of the grapes.”

2017 SPON — Syrah & Sangiovese was blended on August 9th and packaged on September 18th. It’s 6.1% alcohol by volume, 22 IBU, 3.5 pH, and 1.002 specific gravity (0.5 Plato). This is our first blend. It will be released when our tasting room opens on Friday, December 15th at 4pm. It will be available by the glass and in bottles to go (375ml/$25). We have about 3,000 bottles available with a bottle limit of three bottles per customer per day. Outside of special events, it will only be available at our tasting room.



2017 SPON — Peach & Apricot

7 December 2017

LR--2 (3)

We’re excited to announce that this weekend we’ll be releasing 2017 SPON — Peach & Apricot, our 100% spontaneously fermented blend refermented with Ranger peaches and Patterson apricots.

Our 2017 blend was made from about 1,200 liters (75%) of two-year old SPON and 400 liters (25%) of one-year old SPON. SPON is our 100% spontaneously fermented beer that we turbid mash with well water and local grain, boil with aged hops from our barn, cool and inoculate overnight in our coolship, and 100% spontaneously ferment in oak barrels. The peach varietal this year is Ranger, which came from Noble Farms in Lubbock, Texas. The apricot variety this year is Patterson, which came from Blossom Hill in California. We used about 800 pounds each of peaches and apricots (1,600 pounds total) in the refermentation.

2017 SPON — Peach & Apricot is 5.5% alcohol by volume, 19 IBU, 3.4 pH, and has finishing gravity of 1.003 (0.75 Plato). It was blended on June 23rd and packaged on August 15th, 2017. This is our second blend.

2017 SPON — Peach & Apricot will be released when our tasting room opens at 4pm on Friday, December 8th. It will be available by the glass and in bottles to go (375ml/$25). We have about 3,800 bottles available with a bottle limit of four bottles per customer per day. Outside of special events, it will only be available at our tasting room.






2017 SPON — Three Year Blend (Blends 3 and 4) This Friday

28 November 2017


This Friday, December 1st, we’ll be releasing the next two blends of 2017 SPON — Three Year Blend! These are blend numbers 3 and 4 (out of five).

2017 SPON — Three Year Blend is a blend of three different vintages — 2014, 2015 and 2016 — of 100% spontaneously fermented beer. Our goal is to make beer inextricably linked to our time, place, and people by harnessing the microflora, climate, and ecology of the Texas Hill Country.

Here’s some more information about both blends:

2017 SPON 3 — Three Year Blend
Bottled on February 6, 2017
5.8% ABV
31 IBU
3.3 pH
1.003 Finishing Gravity
17% three year old beer, 33% two year old beer, and 50% one year old beer
1,295 375ml bottles
1,055 750ml bottles

2017 SPON 4 — Three Year Blend>
Bottled on February 13, 2017
5.7% ABV
24 IBU
3.3 pH
1.002 Finishing Gravity
17% three year old beer, 33% two year old beer, and 50% one year old beer
1,431 375ml bottles
1,130 750ml bottles

Both blends will be available by the glass and in bottles to go starting Friday. The bottle limit is 3 per customer per day for each format of each blend. Aside from special events, blends 3 and 4 will only be available at our tasting room.







2017 Jester King Grim Harvest

22 November 2017


This Friday, November 24th when we open early at Noon, we’ll be releasing 2017 Jester King Grim Harvest! Grim Harvest is our farmhouse ale refermented with the “spent” blackberries from Nocturn Chrysalis.

To make Grim Harvest, we start by blending the base beer for Nocturn Chysalis from our barrel stock. We rack the base beer to a stainless steel tank filled with blackberries. After the fruit refermentation, we rack Nocturn Chrysalis off of the blackberries for packaging. We then take younger farmhouse ale fermented in stainless steel and move it onto the “spent” blackberries. After about a month of aging, we rack what is now Grim Harvest off of the blackberries for packaging. We’re essentially doing a second refermentation of the blackberries with a younger beer. Or in other words, we’re using the byproduct of one beer to make a second.

This is our second-ever batch of Grim Harvest. It was bottled in September, 2017. It’s 5.2% alcohol by volume, 15 IBU, 3.7 pH, and has a finishing gravity of 1.004 (1 degree Plato). Unlike the 2016 batch, we kegged some of this year’s, so it will be available by the glass at our tasting room. It will also be available in bottles to go (750ml/$18). We have about 5,800 bottles with a bottle limit of four per customer per day. We do not anticipate that Grim Harvest will be distributed outside our tasting room aside from special events.




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