Lagunitas Brewing Co. and Griffo Distillery have been longtime friends and neighbors. So, when Covid hit and the world flipped upside down, Head Brewer Jeremy Marshall and Head Distiller Mike Griffo sat down in the Griffo barrel room to figure out how, as leaders in their fields, they might innovate through uncertain times. Jeremy knew beer and Mike knew whiskey. In a brilliant, alcohol-filled moment of Wonka Vision, they dreamed up distilling a version of Waldos Triple IPA beer – the beloved, quick-to-sell out, high-ABV beer with big floral notes – as the perfect experiment. Jeremy would pull the hops from the fermentation process and then Mike would add them to his still – maximizing flavor and aromatics. They cheers-ed to it, and “Still Waldos” was born.
So how does a Triple IPA become a Single Malt Whiskey?
We thought you’d never ask: This spirit’s journey begins at Lagunitas where Jeremy and his team create the epic Waldos mash using 100% malted barley. The unfermented mash takes a half-block trip to Griffo later and Mike and his team are ready to take over. They ferment the mash and add the Waldos’ hops to the copper pot still before running it through the still two separate times. The spirit is then proofed down to 120 and put into a large American Oak cask made by famed French cooperage Seguin Moreau.
After a few years of aging, the spirit that is Still Waldos is ready – soft, floral, hoppy, and delicious. Ideally enjoyed with a bottle of Waldos’ beer! And that is how this beautifully balanced spirit was born.