When chatting with Forager head brewer Austin Jevne, I asked him all about Magnus, the upcoming barrel-aged stout releasing tomorrow.
I had interned at the brewery during its first year of operation, and during that time, Austin’s son Magnus was born.
While I sat sipping on a version of Magnus that was not yet carbonated, and was without coffee, Austin explained that Magnus meant “king” in Norwegian.
The first imperial Sherpa stout was barreled about a month before Austin’s son Magnus was born, with the second beer blended into it brewed a couple months after his birthday. The beer was originally going to be released close to his birthday, as a tribute.
The beer is a blend of stouts aged in honey bourbon barrels since December 2015. It’s conditioned on vanilla beans, cocoa nibs, and coffee. I have had it on three occasions, and the thick, syrup-like concoction displays an impressive array of coffee, maple syrup, cocoa, butterscotch, and a subtle touch of bourbon.
Magnus has already excited the hardcore beer community whether shared with a select few at the taproom, at special events, Rochester’s recent beer fest, and the Northern Lights Rare Beer Fest (where Forager won the people’s choice award). Magnus is a real-life measurement and reflection of how far Forager has come.
“It definitely seems like one of the best beers we’ve put out so far as far as complexity of flavor and craftwork into the process, so it’s pretty much one of our crown jewels right now,” says Austin.
Our take: Austin and the Forager crew have proven time and again that they deserve to be revered in the beer community. Magnus is just another example of the team knowing what it wants to do — and how to do it.