A doppelbock collaboration by Waddell’s and Tumwater’s Matchless Brewing will be released Saturday from 7 to 10 p.m. at The Viking.
Waddell’s brewer Bryan Utigard is a big fan of German beers, but hadn’t produced a professional version of the strong, dark lager style.
After experimenting with a traditional decoction mashing process – in which part of the steeping grains are removed, boiled and added back, to enhance the beer’s color and body – he decided to give it a try.
Matchless, which has been receiving attention lately for its hazy IPAs, entered the picture through a friendship between its sales representative and Waddell’s.
“We’ve done multiple bottle shares with those guys and hung out a lot,” Utigard says. “We said, we should do a collaboration.”
Matchless came to Spokane to help brew a batch of the beer. Utigard says it’s not as big and malty as he’d hoped; it came in at 6.9 percent alcohol by volume, while he was shooting for 7.5. Still, he says, “It turned out good. I like it.”
He plans to do another version later that will be richer and stronger, based on what he learned the first time around.
An IPA from each brewery also will pour for Saturday’s event: Matchless’ Old Pine (6.8 percent alcohol by volume, 75 International Bitterness Units), a classic West Coast IPA hopped with Centennial, Simcoe and Eldorado; and Waddell’s mellower, recently released 5 Mile (6.2, 50), with lots of late-addition Citra and Mosaic.
“It’s a really fruity, awesome IPA,” Utigard says. “For a guy who gets hopped out pretty quickly these days, I’m really liking it.”