As curator of Peaks & Pints’ February Stout Month, Stoutula jumped in his Chevy Impaler to grab Oakshire Brewing’s annual Dark Days of February beer in Eugene, Oregon. Stoutula has followed Oakshire since founders Jeff and Chris Althouse opened their originally named brewery, Willamette Brewery, in 2006. The Althouses brewed 300 barrels that year, far short of what they’d eventually brew after 2008 when they converted Willamette Brewery into Oakshire Brewing. In 2017, Dan Russo became lead brewer managing Oakshire’s collaborative production team of seven and overseeing the Pilot, Vintage and Core Seasonal programs. Russo remains Oakshire’s longest-tenured employee at the community-inspired, small-batch brewing company. Once Stoutula discovered Oakshire brewed another batch of his favorite Hellshire Bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout as part of their Dark Days of February celebration, he knew Oakshire needed to be part of Peaks’ Stout Month. Stop by Peaks for an in-house flight of Oakshire’s Dark Days — a flight Stoutula is calling, Peaks and Pints Beer Flight: Oakshire Dark Days.
Peaks and Pints Beer Flight: Oakshire Dark Days
Overcast skies inspired Oakshire’s dark and smooth oatmeal stout blended with cold brewed coffee, offering a full palate of roasted malts, chocolate, and espresso. The stout is even more silky flowing from our nitro tap.
Eugene’s overcast skies inspired Oakshire’s Overcast Espresso Stout, a dark and smooth oatmeal stout blended with cold brewed coffee, offering a full palate of roasted malts, chocolate, and espresso. Overcast Café: Mexican Mocha is the first variation of Oakshire’s “Café” limited series, an imperial version of Oakshire’s classic Overcast stout with added vanilla, cocoa nibs, cinnamon, and peppers — reminiscent of a delicious Mexican mocha.
Oakshire released its first Hellshire, an American barleywine aged 10 months in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels, in April 2011. The following year, Hellshire became a bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout like the recently released Hellshire XIII, an imperial stout slumbered 13 months in oaken sarcophagi from some of their favorite Kentucky distilleries. “Used to bury leaders and wealthy residents in ancient Egypt, Rome, and Greece, a sarcophagus is a coffin or a container to hold a coffin,” explains Stoutula. “Most sarcophagi are made of stone and displayed above ground. I’m thrilled Oakshire chose this aging apparatus.”
Inspired by candy shared on Valentine’s Day, this 2024 version of Heart Shaped Box barrel-aged imperial stout begins as a massive imperial oatmeal stout. After fermentation, the stout is laid in freshly dumped Kentucky bourbon barrels from Heaven Hill Distilling. After resting for a year, Oakshire selects from the barrels a blend featuring notes of deep chocolate and strong bourbon. The beer receives a generous helping of vanilla beans, cocoa nibs, and coffee roasted by Farmer’s Union. Finally, a dose of raspberry puree helps emulate the hand-dipped confections.