The cooperative tantamount to Verdejo (La Seca) and the craft brewery (San Pedro Latarce) join forces to develop a gourmet product rooted in the rural environment that is committed to new digital marketing channels
September 2021. La Seca and San Pedro de Latarce, Valladolid. – Bodega Cuatro Rayas and Las Llaves de San Pedro have joined forces in innovation and development by combining their most distinctive raw materials: Verdejo grape and barley. Although at first sight, this bled might sound impossible, it brings out a symbiosis of both ingredients resulting in a premium craft beer with a Verdejo character.
‘61’ Verdejo ALE —the ALE term refers to the beer category that is fermented with surface yeasts at high temperature—is the combination of grape must and wort, malt, and hops, producing a beer with a deep golden colour, strong aromas, and flavours where the freshness of the grape comes at the fore. After obtaining the wort by malting the barley, they add the German hops; the resulting product is then blended with the Verdejo must. Both the wort and the Verdejo must are fermented jointly in stainless steel vats with selected yeasts. Later, it is aged for at least half a year in 500L French oak barrels that were previously used to ferment Verdejo wine. With 8% ABV, this single batch corresponding to the 2020 harvest has a limited production of 1200 bottles with 75 centilitres each.
A RESEARCH WITH GREEN & SOCIAL SPIRIT
The self-funded R&D project that made this new beer possible was born at the beginning of 2020, during the first pandemic wave, when the master brewer José Luis del Campo—an ICU healthcare worker at the Valladolid Río Hortega Hospital—contacted the cooperative to pitch in, given Cuatro Rayas’ reputation for making quality wines in DO Rueda.
At that time, working hand in hand with Bodega Cuatro Rayas’ winemaker, Roberto L. Tello, they started a collaborative project to research and develop a craft grape ale (IGA)—a world-class beer category promoted by Italy in international markets. Having Verdejo grapes of the cooperative as the main ingredient, this project is part of Bodega Cuatro Rayas’ ‘green & social’ plan. This strategy brings together the commitment to respect the environment, promote the socio-economic development of the rural areas, and improve the living conditions of the people who live and work there. The small craft brewery in San Pedro de Latarce thus became the ideal partner for an innovative product to join ‘61’ Vermouth Verdejo, launched in 2017, a first of its kind with 100% Verdejo character.
EXCLUSIVE ONLINE MARKETING
Aiming to continue promoting the successful winery’s online shop, after the soaring demand in 2020 during the lockdown and this year 2021 continuously growing remarkable sales, ‘61’ Verdejo ALE will be available exclusively through this channel, as well as throug Cuatro Rayas Profesional, an online cash that is only available for self-employed and companies where the winery offers directly and with services adapted to professional—such as payment facilities, exclusive prices and promotions, and free shipment—its wide range of Verdejo, red, rosé, frizzante wines or varietal vermouths. In addition, this new beer can also be purchased at the physical store of the cooperative Bodega Cuatro Rayas, located in La Seca, Valladolid (Spain).