A Hero's Journey: Novel Brewing Co.
Firkin Fest is less than two weeks away and we’re so excited (and a little intimidated) by this year’s competition! To get you all as pumped as we are, we’re offering a peek behind the curtain at what’s going down at some of our favorite local breweries. First up, Novel Brewing Co.
The brainchild of Brian Koloszyc and Teresa Tamburello, Novel Brewing is truly a love letter to beer. Having obtained their building permit less than a year ago, this chapter of the couple’s life has been on the horizon for nearly a decade. What started as a hobby in their garage has turned into a crowdfunded, locally-renowned taproom and brewery, with Penguin Books-inspired beer posters and literary batch names. Over the years, Brian has worn the hat of novelist, information technology manager, philosopher, artist and scientist before settling on Brewer Extraordinaire (our words, not his), as Teresa takes on Operations, while moonlighting as an environmental engineer.
What are they bringing to the competition next week? Subsidized Time American Barley Wine. Inspired by cold winter nights reading David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest, Brian cites “entire years sponsored by large corporations” as his main influence for this brew. Coming in at 9.5% ABV, with a balanced combination of intense maltiness and hops, this deliciously huge beer has been conditioned for 3 weeks in the cask. Mouthwatering as it sounds, brewing this beer was more challenging than expected. Brian recounts the scene: “This particular brew day was interrupted by a pump seal failure, which is always a hoot 13 hours into a 12-hour brew day.”
Crafting such a big beer on their “little brewhouse than could” may seem daunting to some, but this ambitious couple pulls it off, all for the love of beer. Visit their cozy San Pablo library to check out the rest of their repertoire and be sure to purchase tickets to Firkin Fest to get a piece of this impressive Barley Wine!