Winter 2012 Winter Wit

Brewed with 600 lbs of San Joaquin Valley oranges grown pesticide-free at Hamada Farm in Kingsburg, California and fresh ginger root from Mellow’s Nursery in Morgan Hill, California.

7% ABV | 23 IBUs | 750ml bottles & draft

Our second “Farm to Bottle” offering is a beer brewed in the classic Belgian Wit style. Also called a “white” beer, these wheat ales are very food friendly, balancing a rich velvety mouthfeel with an earthy Belgian-yeast character. Ours is brewed with 600 pounds of juicy winter oranges from Hamada Farm in Kingsburg, California. Working with Cliff Hamada, the third generation owner-operator of the farm, we put together a blend of early season blood oranges, tart pink-fleshed cara cara oranges and sweet aromatic navel oranges. Finally the beer is finished with a touch of fresh ginger root – from Morgan Hill’s  Mellow Nursery – for a hint of tangy spice.

Our Winter Wit was designed from the ground up to be food friendly, balancing an earthy wit-yeast character with fruity acidity and orange zest to create a refreshing yet warming sipper that pairs perfectly with our mild California winters.

Hamada Farm

Hamada Farm is situated in Kingsburg, California, a quiet hamlet just south of Fresno. First established by Cliff’s great-grandfather Shotaro Hamada in 1921, this family run farm now produces a bountiful selection of year round fruits.

We visited the farm at the height of citrus season just before the new year to pick out the perfect blend of oranges for our brew. Cliff proudly displayed his wares as they came in from the field, and showed us around much of his beautiful 180 acre plot. Dotted with retired vintage cars and trucks, the long legacy of the Hamada family working this land is plain to see, and evident in the bountiful fruit they grow. You can see more pictures from our trip to Hamada, including a tour of the Buddah’s Hand trees, on our blog.

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Pairing Notes

Our Orange Wit is a balanced, subtly-citrus beer that pairs well with a huge range of cuisine. Try it with rich and flaky white fish such as halibut or cod, using the beer’s subtle acidity as a balancing counterpoint. For a cozy and warming winter dish, pair with roasted chicken stuffed with lemon slices and served with root vegetables. For something lighter, pair it with a freshly made Caesar Salad to complement the earthy spice character produced by the beer’s yeast.

Our Winter Wit loves cheese, too. Pair with a creamy chèvre (goat) cheese with orange marmalade to highlight the beer’s citrus notes and balance the Belgian-yeast spiciness.