Even though Northside brewery Urban Artifact didn't set out to create the world's most expensive beer, they have managed to do just that with their latest creation, Astronaut Food Blackberry & Blueberry.
The brand new beer, described as a fruit tart, is made with over 1,000 pounds of freeze-dried blackberries and blueberries.
The beer's hefty price tag — $1,100 per barrel — is attributed to the roughly 11 pounds of fresh fruit it takes to produce just one pound of the freeze-dried fruit used to create Astronaut Food. For comparison, the average barrel of beer costs around $75, while the average barrel of wine will you set you back around $100, according to a press release. In fact, even spirits only cost around $500 per barrel.
“When we first came up with the idea for Astronaut Food, it wasn't about the price," says Bret Kollman Baker, one of the Urban Artifact's co-owners, in a press release. "Our best ideas come from separating ourselves from constraints, and, in doing so, the question became how we could possibly fit more fruit in a can. We realized that the limitation wasn't in the amount of fruit we could buy. It was because there’s too much water in fresh fruit.”
Even if they didn't set out to create the world's most expensive beer, Urban Artifact did, in fact, set out to create the world's fruitiest beer. As it turns out, using freeze-dried fruit actually makes it possible for Urban Artifact's Astronaut Food to contain more fruit per drop than any other beverage in the world, according to the brewery's press release.
For those hesitant to try such a tart concoction (Astronaut Food clocks in at an astonishing 15% ABV), brewers at Urban Artifact were able to balance out the tartness of Astronaut Food by fermenting some of the sugar out of the beer.
“We love to explore, to pursue our creativity in innovative ways and reward the curious drinker,” Kollmann says. "We’ve brewed beers with Yellow Mombin, an exotic fruit that only grows in the Amazon Rainforest; with Durian, the world’s stinkiest fruit; and the previously illegal purple-hulled Mangosteen.”
Got deep pockets? The latest batch of Urban Artifact's Astronaut Food Blackberry & Blueberry will be available to purchase at the brewery's Northside location (1660 Blue Rock Street), on their online store and in select retailers beginning Monday, May 23. Despite the cost of each barrel, a four-pack of Astronaut Food will only set you back $30.
For more information, visit artifactbeer.com.