The boys at ColdFire Brewing have captured our favorite aspects of small business: a family operation making something special, with an appreciation for the community that makes it all possible. They are an American craft brewery with European inspirations, proudly pouring their hearts out in Eugene, Oregon.
This month we were able to get our hands on a "First Dibs" beer - a delicious and limited (and entirely optional) beer available to purchase for Beer Club members. The Bourbon Council is a big, roasty and balanced 12.5% Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout from the ColdFire cellars. Only $18.50 a bottle.
ColdFire St. James IRA
Partners In Crime (Metaphorically Speaking)
The minds behind ColdFire are Stephen and Dan Hughes, brothers and business partners. As they tell it, Dan convinced his brother to start brewing beer in college as a way to get "good beer cheap." They probably wouldn't have guessed that it would turn into one of the top breweries in Eugene.
Their St. James IRA won a silver medal at the Great American Beer Fest, and it's a staple on tap and in cans. It is exceedingly crushable, marrying toffee malt notes and crisp piney bitterness.
Coldfire seeds of infinity brett saison
The Story Of A Belgian Style, American Boys, and a Foeder Named "Ella"
It wouldn't be a "European-inspired" brewery without a good saison, the classic farmhouse ale. Seeds of Infinity is fermented in stainless steel before conditioning in oak foeders with Brettanomyces, the famous wild yeast. It is dry-hopped with Galaxy, Amarillo, and Azacca hops before re-fermenting in the bottle.
This is classic saison with a funky twist: true to style, it is dry and light-bodied, but with a tart funk and tropical notes of papaya, peach and goose berry.
coldfire minute after midnight imperial stout
A Ponderous Stout For Winter Nights
In addition to turning their beer-making dreams into reality, the Hughes brothers have both started families of their own. They now try to balance their time between the brewery, the barrel room, the back office, and the home. To pull that off, anyone would need an occasional hit of caffeine.
Cold brewed coffee is a crucial ingredient in the 10.5% Minute After Midnight, which gives off additional notes of vanilla, roasted malts and dried tobacco. Just be careful drinking after dinner, because its name will become prophecy.