Urban Chestnut, Switchgrass to debut Schnickelfritz Bierschnaps

Beer Of The Week

Two of my local favorites are combining their forces of creativity to bring us something new to keep us warm this fall and winter, Bierschnaps.

Urban Chestnut and Switchgrass Spirits, have created Schnickelfritz Bierschnaps, inspired by traditional Bavarian distilling. This small-batch, limited edition spirit is distilled entirely from Urban Chestnut’s classic, Bavarian Wheat, Schnickelfritz, and it is available for purchase only at UCBC’s Grove Bierhall starting this week.

Bierschnaps is a spirit that originated in Bavaria, where brewers would distill a batch of beer to capture the essence of the aromas and flavors. Urban Chestnut has worked with a Bavarian distillery in the past to create Bierschnaps using a Doppelbock brewed at their German location, Urban Chestnut Hallertau.

“After working with Brennerei Kraus in Bavaria, we couldn’t wait to bring Bierschnaps to St. Louis,” says Brewmaster and Co-Founder of UCBC, Florian Kuplent. “We decided to distill Schnickelfritz, Bavarian Wheat for our first U.S. batch, because of its unique combination of fruity and spicy flavors.”

Urban Chestnut partnered with local St. Louis distillery, Switchgrass Spirits, to help them distill the beer into schnapps. Nick Colombo, Founding Member of Switchgrass Spirits explains, “Our passion is traditional American and European spirits. We normally make whiskey and fruit brandy, but this was a really fun project which fits our style. We realized how rare bierschnaps is in the U.S., very few breweries or distilleries are making it. We are excited to work with UCBC to bring this new category of spirit to Saint Louis.”

“We partnered with Switchgrass not only because of their ability to craft excellent and delicious spirits, but also because of their commitment to the St. Louis community,” Kuplent said. “Earlier this year they collaborated with us and seven other St. Louis breweries to raise over $19,000 for service industry workers affected by the pandemic with their Common Bond Project. We were honored to be a part of that.”

Schnickelfritz Bierschnaps, sold in 750ml bottles, emanates bready and fruity aromas with hints of clove and spice. It is best served on its own or with ice and sipped as a digestif, according to Kuplent. The bottles are $30 plus tax.

They can be purchased through UCBC’s online store and picked up from its Grove Bierhall: urbanchestnut.com.

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