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A story about time

Oriel Quadrupel Mezcal Barrel Aged


One year ago we brewed the third batch of Quadrupel. Long before the brew day we did some research on which type of barrels we should use, for the first batch, we used Jack Daniel’s whiskey, for the second Rum from Belize and for the third, we wanted to experiment more, so we took Mezcal barrels. I am not sure how many of you know what is mezcal, is often mistaken with tequila, but it is made slightly different.

Mezcal is a spirit made from different varieties of agave and it can only be labeled mezcal if it is 100% agave and made within a certain region of Mexico that comprises 7 different states. The main mezcal producer is Oaxaca state. The agave are harvested, cut off and the remaining heart, called the piña are placed into a pit and there they are left there to roast for four days.

The roasting brings out the natural sugars of the agave that is very sweet.

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Craft beers aged in wine barrels

Dubbel Merlot and Tripel Chardonnay aged in Romanian oak barrels from Liliac Winery

Imagine a mélange between beer and wine.

That was the concept that we had in mind when we started to get in touch with a lot of wineries from Romania. Being a small microbrewery doesn’t give you an advantage and we received a lot of negative answers from wineries that we had a lot of expectations of. But as in the beer field, in the wine business is also complicated, therefore we kept trying until some open minded people were interested enough in this collaboration. After a lot of emails sent and phone calls, we finally received some positive answer and we were happy about that.


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New month, new beers

Oriel Quadrupel Blackberry Vanilla

When we think about July, we think about summer. Summer has taken her entire power over the city and she is strong, sunny and beautiful.

With all that hot weather, working around or just enjoying the days, we all need a moment for ourselves. And here comes the beer. Treat yourself with a moment of lavishness while drinking one of our new releases of the month, we promise that all are exquisite.

Let’s start with our first release of the month that is the Quadrupel Blackberry Vanilla.

We met the guys from Abund Berry many months ago, actually last year in the summer when they had their fresh production of blackberries, but we had our tanks full and didn’t have the time to make a new beer with fruits. Time passed, they transformed their blackberries into wine, jam and some, into a natural juice that was kept in a cold storage.


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Gold Medal

Oriel Quadrupel Belize Rum BA awarded at Meinenger’s International Craft Beer Award

There are times in life when you work so hard and eventually the work that you are making gets noticed. As it was normal, because we got used to receive prizes when we were homebrewing years ago,  so when we got pro, we decided to check in a professional competition to see how good our beer is.

Oriel Quadruepel Belize Rum BA is a quadruple style beer, of 10% ABV, aged in Rum barrels for seven months. As you all know, an exceptional beer needs time and for this one we gave her time of fermentation, barrel aging and bottle conditioning for many months.

We found out at the beginning of 2019 about this competition, is one of the best craft beer competitions from Germany and thousands of beers are judged yearly by a lot of judges. We didn’t know we got chances to win, but still, we were like “yes, let’s do this!”. We entered the contest, sent 10 bottles to Germany and waited for the answer. The final results were to be announced  by the middle of April, but not the exact awards.


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Can you See the Light?

An audacious collaboration between Oriel Beer and Wicked Barrel

If you see the light, you suddenly understand something you didn’t understand before. This quote is from Cambridge dictionary. How it can relate to our beer? Well, is very simple, because you all have a perception on an imperial stout beer and when you will try this beer, you will see that is different and you will begin to understand.
The stouts are top fermented beers, dark in color and made with roasted malts. Back in 1677, the word stout appeared for the first time in the Egerton Manuscript (a book written by Francis Henry Egerton, an Earl of Bridgewater), but it referred as a stronger beer rather than dark.

See The Light

Photo by Hidden Hallow Photography

The story of the Imperial Stout started somewhere in the 18th century, when a brewery from London started to export  to the court of Catherine II of Russia. The beer was dark and with a higher alcohol content  and the Empress just loved it.

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Or how our year started

As we blink, the time flies and so was the end of 2018. We had our 1st Anniversary which was a blast, we ended our year with 8 launched beers in our portfolio and we declared ourselves happy for the year that had passed.

After concluding 2018, January 2019 came, and what a month it was. We brewed so much cool new stuff that we are eager to share with you. So the list is as follows:

  • A new batch of Blond Wild with Brettanomyces (that funky, bubbly beer)
  • A new batch of Saison (new recipe, super awesome taste)
  • Tripel aged in Chardonnay barrel from Liliac Winery
  • Dubbel aged in Merlot barrels from Liliac Winery
  • Quadrupel aged in Whisky barrels, Laphroaig and Auchentoshan

And we still have some cool news around, but we will keep them secret for the moment.

At the beginning of January we launched the 2nd batch of Quadrupel aged in Belize Rum barrels. The perfect balance between a barrel and a beer, everyone said. We are very happy how our Quadrupel series evolves and that everyone is so curious all the time to try it.

But let’s get back to some serious substance. At the end of January took place Rate Beer Best. Rate Beer is a super well known website and app where everyone makes reviews for craft beers or where you can find cool places with craft beer around you in all over the world. There are a lot of categories for this awards, from the best beers in the world, breweries, reviewers etc.


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Let’s get together


And it seems like, FINALLY, we are grown ups now!

Oh my, this year passed so fast, it feels like the other day was December 2017 and we were just launching Oriel Blond and Oriel Dubbel. But look, twelve months later, we have eight labels and we can pride ourselves that we evolved as brewers in this beautiful scene of craft beer.

We brewed continuously our Blond and Dubbel as our permanent line beers and we continued with some limited editions in order to experiment more in the direction we liked. Let’s get a bit clearer, we brew Belgian style ales, but in our own direction, in a modern way, so don’t expect that classic Belgian taste.

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A Belgian Dark Strong Ale for the winter

We were always fans of winter beers, we loved the labels with snow, Santa Claus, mistletoe or fairy creatures, so since we opened our brewery we were restless and we wanted to make a winter beer. And since the winter beers are usually dark and strong in alcohol, we started to think about the recipe in the summer time.

The brewing was in the first days of July and while everyone was sunbathing and enjoying the summer, we were thinking about our winter beer.


It started with a recipe of a Belgian Dark Strong Age: six types of malt, two types of hop, Belgian dark candi syrup and extra, we added during boiling some spices (grains of paradise and coriander) and lots of cocoa husks. And of course we fermented with a fresh yeast blend (Belgian strains). After the fermentation ended, we wanted to do more and we transferred in the secondary tank on cherry wood chips, a couple of kilos of organic cocoa beans from Ivory Coast, more cocoa husks and grains of paradise.

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Experimental batches of new beers


There is a time in the life of each brewer when it comes natural brew beers in collaboration with other brewers. The craft beer scene is very friendly and is a continuous exchange of experience and knowledge.

The story of our collaborations starts simple and we chose the month of September to brew both beers.

The first collaboration brew was with Sunstone Ale from Chisinau, Moldova. We’ve known Kirill for some years now from the time we were homebrewing and it was obvious to make a beer together. We got along from the first time we met and we have always tried each other beer and loved them. So it was normal to start thinking in making a beer together.

Choosing the recipe wasn’t so difficult because we are into Belgian stuff and he is into hoppy beers, so the winner style was a Quadrupel IPA, brewed with lots of hops and fermented with Belgian liquid yeasts.

The brew day was as much fun as it could be, honestly since we opened the brewery we haven’t considered that the stuff we are doing are working stuff because we enjoy it, maybe except for the bottling because it takes a lot of time. Returning to the main subject, it was a super fun day where we talked about beers and beer things related. Stas from Elvis brewery from Chisinau joined us in discussions and we tasted beers meanwhile brewing.

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From core range to limited edition

Here, at Oriel Beer, we like to play with recipes and because of that we decided to change a little our base recipes of Oriel Blond and Oriel Dubbel.

Blond WIld

Let’s start with the blond one because everyone likes blondes. We brewed it like the basic one with a primary fermentation of two weeks using a Belgian yeast strain. All good and nice until now. After the primary fermentation, we moved the beer into a second tank where we added Brettanomyces Bruxellensis, a spontaneous yeast, that is naturally found in the air. The strain of this wild yeast was isolated from brewery cultures of Brussels and it’s commonly found in lambic-style beers.
For the second fermentation we kept the beer for a month and then we bottled it and let it rest for three months.
With this type of yeast is all about time because it eats slowly and it will continue to eat and break down sugars long after packaging. Beers fermented in secondary with Brettanomyces will change over time, often becoming dryer and continuing to produce esters and phenols.
One famous trappist beer, Orval that is seconadary fermented with Brettanomyces is sold at the brewery aged in bottle for three years. And the taste is just wonderful.

Don’t be afraid of this kind of taste because it is normal to be slightly sour, funky and with an earthy character. Some have described it as having a “barnyard” or “wet horse blanket” flavor. Don’t laugh, is normal.
That’s how it was with the Blond so be wild, drink wild.

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