Blending a Blockbuster

The folks at Boulevard Brewing Co. and Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. have been hard at work on this year’s official SAVOR collaboration beer.

Lucky for us, they’ve been taking photos along the way! This photo gallery captures two steps of the process. The first 11 photos come courtesy of Sierra Nevada’s Bill Manley, and they document the trip that Sierra Nevada’s brewers took to Kansas City in March to work with┬áBoulevard Brewing Co.’s brewers to determine the final blend for Terra Incognita, the 2012 SAVOR collaboration beer.

The final four pictures show the labeling process that took place in May in Kansas City. Boulevard’s Julie Weeks took photos of the massive effort to hand-label 4,800 bottles of beer. Have a look, and don’t forget to pick up a bottle of your own as an exit gift at the end of your night at SAVOR.

  • Brewery Tour

    Boulevard Brewing Company Brewmaster Steven Pauwels, with Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.’s Head Research and Development brewer Scott Jennings and Brewmaster Steve Dresler (L-R) joke as they tour the brewhouse at Boulevard’s brewery in Kansas City Mo. Boulevard and Sierra Nevada were picked to brew the 2012 SAVOR collaboration beer.



  • Kansas City Skyline

    The Kansas City skyline as seen from the brewhouse at Boulevard Brewing Company. x


  • Brewery Tour

    Sierra Nevada brewers Scott Jennings and Steve Dresler, along with Boulevard Brewmaster Steven Pauwels (L-R), tour Boulevard Brewing Company as they discuss the blend for the SAVOR 2012 collaboration beer. x


  • In the Barrel Room

    Sierra Nevada brewers Scott Jennings and Steve Dresler, along with Boulevard Brewmaster Steven Pauwels (L-R), discuss the blending for the barrel-aged portion of Terra Incognita the official SAVOR 2012 festival beer at Boulevard Brewing Company in Kansas City, MO. x


  • Barrels of Terra Incognita

    Missouri oak barrels, which previously held both spirits and red wine, were used to blend a base beer that will become Terra Incognita. x


  • Extracting Samples

    Sierra Nevada brewer Scott Jennings and Boulevard Brewmaster Steven Pauwels pull beer samples out of Missouri oak barrels for a tasting to determine the blend used in Terra Incognita. x


  • Tasting the Different Blends

    Sierra Nevada brewers Scott Jennings, from left, and Steve Dresler, along with Boulevard Brewmaster Steven Pauwels, laugh as they describe the unusual flavor profiles in cultivated strains of Brettanomyces bruxellensis on a roof at Boulevard’s brewery high above any potential brewhouse contamination risk from the virulent “wild” yeast strain which will be used in Terra Incognita. x


  • Boulevard Brewing Company

    Boulevard Brewing Company’s iconic smokestack on a mild winter day during a visit from Sierra Nevada to determine the blend of Terra Incognita. x


  • Blending the Beer

    Boulevard brewer Dustin Jamison, left, uses a pipette and a graduated cylinder to measure precise amounts of beer from individual Missouri oak barrels to complete a final blend of beer which will make up Terra Incognita. x


  • A Row of Samples

    Glasses with beer from over 40 individual Missouri oak barrels were evaluated and tasted to determine the blend for the Boulevard-Sierra Nevada collaboration, Terra Incognita x


  • Tasting in the Barrel Room

    Boulevard Brewing Company founder John McDonald, Sierra Nevada’s head Research and Development Brewer Scott Jennings, Sierra Nevada’s Brewmaster Steve Dresler and Boulevard’s Brewmaster Steven Pauwels (L-R) discuss tasting notes from barrel-aged beer samples, as they determine the blend ratio for Terra Incognita. x


  • Everyone Gets Involved

    Even John McDonald, founder and president of Boulevard, joined in for the bottle-labeling festivities. He ensured that the process was efficient and also fun!x


  • Making Sure It’s Straight

    Each label was carefully lined up with marks on a specially-made jig for consistent application.x


  • A Team Effort

    30 employees and friends of Boulevard hand-labeled 400 cases of Terra Incognita with labels created by Hammerpress, a nearby Kansas City business.x


  • Waiting to be Popped

    Each Terra Incognita bottle proudly sports a custom SAVOR cork.x


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