Kernel Stone 2020
Kernel Stone 2020
2020 sees us revisiting one of our absolute favourite beers from the 2019 Collective, Kernel Stone. Last year, this plumcot refermentation took us by surprise each time we tasted it in the months after release. Such subtle flavour, which continually unveiled itself with more time in bottle. I drank all the bottles I had here, so I knew we had to make it again.
Kernel Stone 2020 is an Australian Wild Ale made with Plumcots from Yarralee Orchard outside Bathurst NSW. Plumcots are a cross between a plum and an apricot... these were developed in the States and I believe we call them pluots, which I know have been used in some beers about the place here and there. '20 was a touch warmer than '19 and the fruit ripened a few weeks earlier than last. We received 60kg of the juiciest navel-sized fruit on 23 December and spent the morning of Christmas Eve splitting the fruit before allowing them to get even riper under carbonic conditions until we racked barrel 1810 of 9 month old Gold onto the fruit on 27 December. The beer macerated and refermented with the fruit as per our normal process for 10 weeks (a whole month longer than last year) before packaging in early March 2020.
When we were tasting this beer before release, we thought the aroma evoked memories of red skins, fairy floss, red berry rosé, berry cobbler and oven-roasted sugars. The palate was compact with an upfront skinsy, juicy red wine character. This year's version is certainly showing off the riper fruit than in '19 with a deep, dark palate that maintains a mysterious nuance and subtlety.
The label for Kernel Stone is made from a photo I took of a beautiful old sandstone church (Hunter Baillie Memorial) near where I live in Annandale. We named it Kernel Stone because the pips in apricots are called kernels and in plums are called stones. I'm not sure what a plumcot centre would be called so we split the difference.
Each member will receive 1 x 750ml bottle of Kernel Stone as part of their membership.
We have an additional 114 x 750ml bottles, as well as 6 x 1.5 litre magnums, available for Collective members to purchase on a first come basis from 12pm (Sydney time) on Wednesday 6 May. There is no limit on 750ml bottles but a 1 bottle limit per person on the magnums.