What do you already know about Randall The Enamel Animal? Anything? For beer geeks, it’s an elusive tool that turns great beer into incredibly unique great beer. I had my first experience with Randall yesterday, and it was worth recounting. But first, a little background on Randall. Here is a quote directly from Sam at Dogfish Head…
“Randall the Enamel Animal is the original gangster organoleptic hop transducing module. Basically, it’s a sophisticated filter system that allows the user to run draft beer through a chamber of whole leaf hops, spices, herbs, fruit, etc. so that the alcohol in the beer strips the flavor from whatever you add and puts it in the beer.”
Beer enters the infusing chamber from the bottom, maximizing beer-hop contact and forcing foamy beer to exit at the top.
Since it’s beer week here in Cincinnati, there are alot of great events taking place in the city. One that I was looking forward to most was the Dogfish Head tap takeover at my favorite downtown bar, The Lackman. I took this shot as they taps were being installed. They featured alot of great beers from Dogfish, including Bitches Brew, Pangaea, Black & Red, Faithful Ale, Immort Ale, Ta Henket, Chicory Stout, Hellhound On My Ale, Burton Baton, Noble Rot and the all new gluten free ‘TweasonAle. But as I mentioned before, it was Randall that stole the show, although not without some initial complications. We all watched like kids on Christmas morning as Donn Bichsel from Dogfish filled one of the Randall tanks with fresh hops, followed by coffee beans from a great local beanery, Tazza Mia. Our enthusiasm was tempered however as the machine we were all fascinated with got a bit too clogged up, I’m guessing with some of the grainy stuff that was in the bag of hops. So it was purged and the second time around, only the Tazza coffee beans made the mix.
When a couple of pints finally made their way to my table, I smelled and tasted and could not have been happier with how it turned out. Having never tasted an IPA (90 Minute was the base) with coffee flavors included, I wasn’t sure it would live up to some of the great coffee stouts I’ve tried. But you know what, the uniqueness of it and the overall fresh flavor and taste was nothing short of brilliant. It’s easy to get excited for special events like this, and then have something let you down, but I’m here to tell you that the folks at Dogfish and The Lackman really knocked it out of the park with this event, be sure not to miss events like these in the future.
Have you tried anything from Randall? What was your experience?