How Inspiration and Experimentation Led Kent Falls Brewery to an Award-Winning Beer

Photo credit: Beer Connoisseur

Photo credit: Beer Connoisseur

After visiting his neighbor’s vineyard, Zach Ross, Head Brewer at Kent Falls Brewing, left inspired to make a wine- and honey-inspired beer.

What was the inspiration behind this beer, and who came up with the recipe?

The intention of the base beer was to create a beer that tastes like biting into a ripe white peach without containing any fruit. A local vineyard had fresh pressed chardonnay grape juice and must and was offering it for free and we couldn’t pass it up. We showed up as they were pressing, and we added the must and juice as soon as we got back to the brewery. I designed the recipe in collaboration with Eric Drew from Casa Agria Specialty Ales.

To a casual beer drinker, how would you describe this beer in less than 10 words.

Akin to wine, but one you’d drink with pizza.

What do you enjoy most about this beer?

The interplay of oak fermentation and fruity fermentation qualities balanced between a crisp dryness and clarity in the glass. It’s an enjoyable beer from the way it looks in the glass to the last crispy sip that finishes clean on the palate.

What role does honey play in this beer?

Honey was used to bottle condition the beer. It was the first time we had used honey to bottle condition and have used it in every farmhouse beer since. It adds a hint of residual sweetness, and I’ve noticed it cleans up the beer faster than when we’d use other fermentables. I’m absolutely convinced the honey helps with reducing THP production or at least cleans it up much faster.

What do you enjoy most about using honey in the capacity of brewing beer?

The variety in honey and the different flavors each one imparts. We used buckwheat honey to bottle condition our buckwheat farmhouse ale which was totally different than clover honey. We also have a Biere de Miel in the barrels now to experiment with adding honey at various stages. Very excited to work with avocado blossom honey in the future, if I can ever get my hands on some.

To see a full list of our 2018 Honey Beer Competition, visit