Well, that makes two beers in a short amount of time that had an infection. I’m not going to continue defaming (not that I really have already) breweries, but it seems to me that I’ve figured something out about cellaring beer. Most of my cellared beers are a series of great/world class brews that will stand the test of time. A couple brews were gambles to see what would happen. A few of the brews were decent breweries that had made something interesting.
Okay, here is what I’ve figured out. The difference between a good brewery and a not so good brewery can become evident over time. I’m not talking about a brewery that has the occasional infection (it happens to the best of ‘em). Take, for instance, Bell’s Brewery. I think they make some really good stuff, but they had a bad batch last year or so, which they promptly recalled.
The craft breweries I’m talking about are those who, I think, already have a palpable but not necessarily pin-downable difference of the start. With some beers, one may be “not sure what exactly it is about it, but it’s a touch off.” Then, you might cellar one of those products. After a while, the off-ness takes root. The hinted at becomes all to evident. They weren’t really ever, methodologically speaking, good brews.
So, don’t waste too much time using precious money and cellar space unless you are certain the brewery is up to snuff. However, I’ve had brew after brew of wonderful beers that blossomed…remember not to let a few bad apples ruin the bunch.
Sounds like trial and error to me! OK, so I know any brewery can have a problem, but as you say, some are clearly more with-it than others, especially in the long-term.
Instead of ‘defaming breweries’, can you list those that you have found were very good for long-term storage? Just curious what your experience is.