Beer Here: Jolly Pumpkin Oro de Calabaza

From: Dexter, Michigan

Style: Wild Farmhouse Ale

ABV: 8%

Every beer that comes from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales in Dexter, Michigan is open fermented and aged in oak. This means their beers take a lot of time to make, have a high risk of getting infected by stray yeasts and bacteria, and can make it very expensive.

Lucky for us, since they opened in 2004, they have perfected their craft, consistently creating beers with amazing complexity while keeping their prices reasonable.

The Oro de Calabaza, pictured here, emulates the Franco-Belgian tradition of strong golden ales. After the brewing process, this beer is thrown into Chardonnay barrels and left to age for 2-4 months. The batches are blended to achieve consistency.

This beer can keep you talking for hours. The subtle sour funkiness, vanilla and grape from the wine barrels, brisk and tingly carbonation, spicy and peppery from the hop and yeast characters.

Beer pairing applications include, but are certainly not limited to, grilled meats, hardy salads, washed-rind cheeses, and caramel desserts.

If you fancy yourself more of a wine person, give Jolly Pumpkin a try. You might find there's more to beer than you once thought.