Creative Distillation - Transcript for Episode 35: Weston Ring, Cellarperson, Wild Provisions & 4 Noses Brewing
Stefani H 0:06
Welcome to another episode of Creative Distillation. Your hosts Jeff and Brad from the University of Colorado Boulder is Leeds School of Business discuss entrepreneurship research while enjoying fine craft beverages. In this installment of Creative Distillation, Brad and Jeff conduct some field research at Wild provisions beer project in Boulder, Colorado. Speaking with Weston Ring, the cellar person for wild provisions and their parent company bore noses brewing about his path to brewing the experimental brewing approach at Wild provisions, and why they focus on just two types of beer. Enjoy and cheers.
Welcome to create this delusion where we distill entrepreneurship research and actionable insights. I am your host, as always Research Director for the Deming Center for Entrepreneurship at the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado Boulder, Jeff York with my co host. Hello,
Jeff, it's great to see you again. I'm Brad Warner, and I'm an entrepreneur also worked with you closely at the Deming center. But today we're doing a really cool episode.
I'm totally stoked about this. And I hope that the picture our producer Joel just took is going to come out because we are now perched with three microphones on top of a barrel beer stacked around them bread has a notebook. He's very professional, and we're getting ready to a tasting and we're at Wild provision right? Is it while provisions are provision?
I don't know it's on it sounded like a hunting outfitter to me. But I walked in here looking much better than
that. Oh, this place is super cool. And we have Weston joining us. Weston, welcome.
Weston Ring 1:39
Hi. Glad to be here.
Weston is the seller, man seller person. What is your official title here
Weston Ring 1:45
was to sell a person for law provisions and for noses. Okay, so tell me
what? You got two crazy names.
In seller person title, what is that?
Weston Ring 1:57
So essentially, similar person takes the beer from after it's brewed all the way through the end of fermentation. That's awesome. Yeah.
Which is super important for the styles that you guys specialize in. Right? Yeah,
Weston Ring 2:09
that's right. Yeah. Especially the loggers. We do them in a completely different way than most breweries here. In Colorado, we actually use a coolship, which is something you typically only see with sour beers, right. But we actually receive all of our work in a cool shape here to cool it up. Cool, cold break, and then they all get open fermented, which is something else you don't open ferment loggers? Yeah, we do. We've got to do even room with positive pressure on it to keep microbes out and everything same. Yeah. It's quite a process that you don't see many places. Do
you have any idea what he just talked about? Right. I
do know what open fermentation is. All right. Very cool. And the other thing that I'm really curious about though, is Wesson, we kind of grabbed him we
for a happy hour, but he came
over with a beer we were all set up. So first talk through the beer that you're drinking Weston and why you chose that right? So
Weston Ring 2:55
I'm drinking the 12 degree premium pale lager. This is a Czech style lager. It's made with 100% Check ingredients, the grain is all checked, grown. It's all checked. saaz, hops, check yeast, the whole thing. And it's a to me, I drink it pretty often because it's it's just really, really well balanced between a nice bready malt character and like a moderate bitterness to keep everything balanced out.
Oh, my God, it's great.
Weston Ring 3:24
It's pretty stunning.
It's crazy. Oh, my God, it's so good. So why why all the big focus on Czech stuff like what's, what's the deal with that? Like, because some people are like, What the heck?
Weston Ring 3:35
That's a good question. I you know, I wasn't part of this business when all those decisions were made. But I think that I've been seeing kind of a movement and breweries to focus more on very specific styles and regions, instead of trying to do everything kind of, well, they're doing one thing really, really well. I've seen that with several breweries in this region who are focusing solely on either German or Czech styles. And I think that's kind
of cool. And you said, you're going to Prague soon, right? Yeah,
Weston Ring 4:00
I'll be going in June that Czech Republic, Germany and Belgium That's
awesome, man. So I gotta wax a little bit on this one because I frickin love Czech Lager is great, right? And this is the reason I'm kind of like, almost like a motional. Because like, so on my one visit the Czech Republic when I was in Prague the whole time. And what's so cool when you guys when you go to Prague, there will be dozens and dozens of bars. And they each brew their own pills and their own lager. And they all brew the same style, but it's slightly different. And it's all fantastic and cheaper than water. Oh my god. Yeah, it's incredible. So it's beer just like this. slight variations. You know, it's really hard to tell the variants in them because they all brew so clean and so pure.
For me though, as an everyday drinking beer, this is great. I just don't have the palette to tell the differences. All I know is I like this one. Well, yeah,
so it's got this saaz hops I was hops are really important because they give it this almost peppery flavor that you get on the very end of it it's a very unique kind of hop and they brewed was really soft water so it gets this really delicate like floral bread like palate like Western said. It's really good.
Weston Ring 5:12
Yeah. And we actually use all our water for these to get that soft water profile.
Yep. Yep. It's amazing. All right,
so wait, I have an actual insight for all you young listeners out there. A Solomon is a very noble profession to want to be when you're a kid. So if you're talking to your parents about firemen, police, I would add Solomon
There we go. Being a seller man is a noble profession. That's an actionable insight.
It is and I'm not getting it's great.
No, I mean, it's amazing. Alright, so we got to make sure we go ahead and taste the next beer. So the next beer Brad was worried because it's October. And this beer has a very orangey what I would call an Oktoberfest looked to it. Brad was nervous because he was scared it was pumpkin beer.
Weston Ring 5:58
Oh, yeah, definitely not.
Thank you, sir.
So what do we got here? This is the half dark lager
Weston Ring 6:03
I think it says yeah, all three of our check loggers are very similar in process and recipe this one has. I've never personally brewed this one. I believe it has a small amount of karamba malt that gives it some of that slightly darker color. But to me, this one has a ton of like raisin and molasses without being overly sweet or cloying, right, this one's my favorite one right now. Actually,
what's your favorite beer on tap? Yeah,
I love this one. Well, I get like a real nice little like just henna like caramel, right like that. Almost like Oktoberfest toasted malt flavor a little more like a British Pale Ale where they would use like that malt that gives it ESB kind of Yeah, sure. But without the USB buttery weirdness. This is really good, man.
I don't know how you would choose actually, I think you know what, though? I think I'm still we still like the first one. I think for the first one for me. Yeah, it's still still my choice. Well, this
is Wow, neither of
them suck. Okay. These are great.
So did we talk a little bit about so this is called from Okay, God, I'm wild revisions. Is the actual property. Yep. Google wild provisions beer. here in Boulder. We had no idea it was here until like 24 hours ago, I guess. How this place? How long have you guys been
Weston Ring 7:16
here? So this is a offshoot of foreknows is okay. For news. The brewery that's located in Broomfield Broomfield. Correct, right. Yeah. And they wanted a facility where we could focus more on sour beers without being concerned about infecting the rest of our clean beer over there. And so they built this facility out. And you know, this was years before I came on, but I think it's been open about three years. Your kid is two or three years somewhere in that range.
Oh, man, I just have to fact
Weston Ring 7:45
check me on that because I could be wrong.
But I didn't know I had no idea. I think I'd seen the signs and that looks cool. I thought it was like she she bought her a clothing store or something. You know,
the design in here is amazing. Oh, yeah. It's like right out of Sweden, right? I mean, it's just clean.
Yeah, you were describing these tanks over here like so we're looking at tanks. They have like a open kind of Vault bottom. And then I I don't I've never seen takes like this. What's going on with these guys?
Weston Ring 8:10
Yeah, so we've got a couple different big oak vessels here. We've got some big six large about 20 barrel, French oak, actually American oak fooders. And they house all of our sour beers. We've also gotten to their kind of a cross between a fooder and a cylindrical conical fermenter where we open ferment our sours before they go into the fooders for aging. And then we've got it's called a pyramid stack of pungens, which are essentially oversized red wine barrels that are housing all spontaneously fermented sour beer.
Wow, is that what we're looking at here with this airlock in it? Is that the
Weston Ring 8:50
so the one with the huge airlock is fooder with spontaneous beer in it. And then all this stacked barrels right next to it are also spontaneous. Weston, I
don't know what episode we're on with this. This is the first episode of this podcast where someone I've been talking to about beer has told me a bunch of things I knew nothing about. It's really cool. That's awesome.
So we know that there's a large amount of breweries in the boulder Front Range, how many people are doing open fermentation? Oh, gosh. Is it is it a very small
Weston Ring 9:20
it's very small. As far as I know, I think it's essentially us and primitive and Longmont. Right. Dave and Eric and Steven Denver black project was but they just closed and there's a KC out in Glenwood Springs is doing it and you know, there might be a couple others. The one and divide. What's it called? I can't remember. But anyways, there's only a handful in the state.
I have to tell you it's worth a trip in here. The beers fantastic. But checking out those tags with all the hardware is amazing.
Well, this whole place is beautiful. You were saying one of the owners an
Weston Ring 9:55
architect. Yeah. One of the owners of Ford noses as an architect, so he designed the space and did a really great
job for noses. We got to get out there sometime too. I'd love that because the brewery at least from what I know is named after the four dogs of the owners or their founders. I
Weston Ring 10:09
think it's actually the founders themselves and
their, their dogs their noses in the dog's nose is something to do it. It's actually next door to a very boulder business. It's like a indoor doggy swimming pool. Have you been over there? You know,
Weston Ring 10:25
I know. I have
not I have not taken ranger there.
It'd be perfect dispensary and one side brewery in the middle dog swimming pool on Yeah, I think there is
Weston Ring 10:34
a climbing gym next door to now.
Like, here we go. This is all right. So now we're gonna go to the darkest beer we have here. I think this is just a dark lager. Right? Dark.
Weston Ring 10:45
Yep. Same story as the other 200% Check grain larger load of karamba. If I remember writing just more intense roasty flavors and either the other two. Yeah, also a fantastic beer. I mean, honestly, I think all the Czech Lager is coming out. That's really phenomenal.
So yeah, usually in Prague, like they'll have this one will have the light in the dark. Right? Which one do you want. And here's what I noticed. When I was in Prague, I was at this place, I think it was called the skin cat. Something like that. Something weird. And I noticed as we were there drinking, that they were giving us this shot with the beer. And none of the locals were getting the shot with the beer. They just were giving it to us. And I thought this was like, you know, some hospitality kind of thing. Turns out it was absent. So if they're giving you a shot, and you're in luck, you think you should drink it. Maybe you should. I
don't know. Go to tell us the rest of the story.
I don't remember the rest of the story. I don't I do not know. Yeah, I don't know what happened. After that. I just went back the next night to figure out what the hell we were drinking and did not want to drink any more of it. I think of our presentation at like, I think 9:30am And that's our sugar right when they they didn't know this was just as like this green liquid that you normally you do put over sugar, but this was like a little plastic cup. And apparently this is a prog thing. I don't know. Or they just wanted to screw with the tourists. This dark Lager is fantastic.
So tell us, is there anything that we're drinking here that's on tap year round? Or are these all seasonals?
Weston Ring 12:17
Most of these I believe are on year round, the premium pale and the dark lager for sure. Right? I'm not sure the half dark, they've been talking about brewing a new batch of it. So hopefully that'll remain on top as well.
Those are my two favorites. By the way, the premium and the dark lager
premium the dark lager you go on so far. Okay, and now we've got one last one to try Brad and I figured I saved this for last. This is the pills. So check pills. Creative Distillation, brought to you by The Deming Center for Entrepreneurship. We're very big on pills. We've been big on German. Yeah, so I think we're gonna have a conversion
Weston Ring 12:49
here. So this is the little fur coat. This one's actually modeled after a Bavarian pills.
Oh, we're not gonna get that. Very instead of German. Yeah, the North German. Oh, God, this are really good. See what pills is good. Like it's it's so freakin clean. Yeah, that's almost like you didn't drink anything. And then you get that little like, nice bite of the holler tar Tettnang hops like those German cops. So amazing.
That's really good. So Wesson, can we just find you in the tap room? Are you at Hazels? Are you any of the local brewers? Everywhere? Yeah,
Weston Ring 13:26
for noses is all over right now. A lot of our stuff you can only find in the tap room. We did just release the 12 degree pale lager in this first one. So I should be able to find that around. All of our sour stuff for the most part is in the taproom. Although I believe they're working on getting that in more shops right now.
This Taproom is worth a visit. Can
we come back and talk about sours? Because that will be less than three. But I will look at
the good version that three years where I am with beer.
Well, yeah, you're loving all these right? So here, okay. Weston, you're the cellar person like, is bizarre to me that you guys would decide to do like, perhaps the most delicate, difficult to cleanly brew thing you possibly could like a light check lager like I mean, other than like doing an American like, you know, pre pro loggers. That's about as hard as it gets, in my opinion to brew properly. And then you're gonna do a sour brewery in the same place. Where you around for that decision? Because I was not ballsy decision. I don't know how to describe it. Yeah, gutsy call.
Weston Ring 14:31
All I can say is we do take a lot of precautions. mentioned we have a full clean room, the loggers to get them through fermentation. So we do take a lot of precautions with it. But yeah, I mean, there's always some risk.
And I mean, that's just gutsy. I mean, what were we talking about? Like you were talking earlier? Like for news say? Well, let's do a sauerberg. Sure. Yeah, you do. You're sour brewery. You got a little bit of a funkiness going on. You're sour beer, nobody's gonna know. I mean, you can't tell but these things like I mean, you got any problem whatsoever. It's gonna stand out like He
was thinking what he just said they have a clean room at the brewery for the loggers, loggers.
I mean that's cool too. They're doing fermentation a loggers so when he's talking about coolship read what they do I mean I don't know if you notice if you do forgive me but for those of you that may not know about this, if you go to or like Belgium breweries which I'm sure you'll go to like candy on while you're in Brussels and whatnot, so that basically all the I never know is it lambic or Lumbee I always hear people say, but
Weston Ring 15:26
you know, I always just hear the Americanized version.
Y'all guy that lambic bear. Put some strawberries in it. So anyway, that's a creek. Yeah, that there's a crick. So really like lambic breweries and traditional lager breweries. They will pump the word which is the unfermented beer that comes out of the boil with the hops and sometimes Americans add hops, so they'll pump into coolship which, and forgive me, please take me out if I'm wrong here Western but it's just a big flat steel like pan kind of thing. Yeah, that's essentially what it is. And then they're letting that ferment and the open air normally you've got your beer like contained very tightly so no funk gets in it to open ferment a lager is man i hats off to you guys. This is impressive.
Weston Ring 16:10
Yeah. And we actually have two separate cool chips here. One is specifically for sour beers. And it's open to the environment. Yeah. So you're going wild these Exactly. Yeah. So it's just whatever microbes we happen to vote in that day. Yeah. Are going to inoculate the beer. And then we have a clean, I love a clean one that's completely separate. And is
it like so you're doing that wild inoculation year round? Because you've got change, right?
Weston Ring 16:34
Yeah, exactly. In fact, you really need to wait until right about this time of year, our first sour coolship night is going to be on November 7. So there you go. Yeah, you can probably come by and see it. Actually.
I'm coming. Okay, actually, that's an excellent wait. So when
Weston Ring 16:50
will they'll brew the word over for noses? It'll get delivered here, and I'll receive it. It'll get pumped into our cool ship. And then we'll open up the windows and let all the microbes come in. Yes. Yeah, we've got to do it when it's cooler. Because if you do it when it's warm out, you end up getting too many acid producing bacteria in the air and it makes your beer turn to sour become acetic.
Have you ever seen this process that Westerns talking? No, I've
never seen it live. I've seen pictures of it. I'm gonna be here on November. This is probably gonna be after November 7 When you hear this but if you're in Boulder, and you want to come see cool shipping of sour beer. I guess you guys probably do it other nights too. Yeah.
Weston Ring 17:27
Well have other nights throughout the winter. It's worth checking out
very cool. All right. So while provisions check them out, Google them for news is also an amazing brewery way. Way more range. These guys. These guys are specializing in check loggers and sour beers, which is just a really cool combination. Two of my favorite styles. We got to come back and drink sours. Yeah, do it. Really appreciate it. So come check them out. Thanks a lot, guys. Cheers. Cheers. I'm glad we found some beers you like. These are great. All right. So that's it for this episode of crab distillation here at Wild provisions in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. As always, I'm your host, Jeff York, research director at the Deming Center for Entrepreneurship, joined by Brian Warner
and Jeff today was really a cool episode. While provisions is definitely going to be on my list to come by.
And if you're enjoying this podcast, come tune in to the next one because we actually ended up here as part of our Deming center happy hour. So now that we've done a tasting and the Deming staff had been out of the bar, we're gonna now interview them about what the heck they do. That didn't make sense. It's gonna be a blast, which is gonna be super fun. See you next time. Thanks for listening.
Stefani H 18:35
We hope you enjoyed this episode of Creative Distillation recorded live on location at Wild provisions beer project in Boulder, Colorado. Learn more and order merch at wildprovisionsbeer.com. We'd love to hear your feedback and ideas, email us at CDpodcast@colorado.edu. And please be sure to Subscribe to Creative Distillation wherever you get your podcasts. The Creative Distillation podcast is made possible by the Deming Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Colorado boulders LEED School of Business. For more information, please visit deming.colorado.edu. That's d-e-m-i-n-g and click the Creative Distillation link. Creative Distillation is produced by Joel Davis at Analog Digital Arts. Our theme music is "Whiskey Before Breakfast" performed by your humble hosts, Brad and Jeff. Thanks for listening. We'll see you back here next week for the next round of Creative Distillation if you've enjoyed this episode, you may also enjoy Leeds Business Insights, check them out at leeds.ly/lbipodcast.