Johnathan Wakefield, owner/founder of J. Wakefield Brewing Company and Miami beer crafter extraordinaire, is teaming up with Cigar City Brewing for some collaboration brewing. Again.
This time, however, the new line of brews is going commercial and if Miami distributors are willing, you might get to see it in area stores.
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The new line of Cigar City beers is called Cerveza Fresca, and it is based on Mexican agua fresca-type drinks and Caribbean cocktails.
The first in the series will be brewed with guayabana, a fruit native through much of Latin Americas, but particularly found in Mexico, Cuba, the Caribbean and the northern end of South America. It is a fruit with a white, edible pulp that is described as having the taste combination of strawberry, pineapple and with subtle flavor notes of coconut and/or banana.
The recipe was concocted by Wakefield and Wayne Wambles, the head brewer for Cigar City. The beer will be heavily fruited with 495 pounds of guayabana in a 15 barrel system, or over a pound of fruit per gallon. The beer itself is based on a pale ale.
Wakefield said that he has so far received a positive reaction from social media.
"I'm just trying to bring that Miami taste and flavor to my beers," he said. "It's an important key to the community."
Wakefield has previously collaborated with Cigar City, but only with pilot batches such as Miami Madness -- a Berliner weisse brewed with guava fruit--that went on tap at Cigar City's tasting room up in Tampa.
A Berliner weisse is a low-alcohol, sour wheat beer that originated in Berlin, Germany.
Some beer heads in the scene might be familiar with Wakefield's dragon fruit Passion fruit Berliner weisse, or "DFPF," which has consistently made the highest rankings on ratebeer.com. It was also a pilot beer from Cigar City.
The brewing is occurring now and the beer should be ready to go just in time for Hunahpu Day on March 9. This is the first in the series but Wakefield says the brewers are planning a couple more.
In a way, the Miami beer market is coming full circle. Wakefield is standing out by introducing his own style of beer. "I'm going to try and separate myself from the rest of the guys by just
doing that sort of thing," he said. "Not a lot of other guys are doing the fruited Berliners."