Highland Brewing is widely known as Asheville’s original craft brewery, and through the years — despite dozens of new craft breweries also calling Asheville home — Highland has remained the dominant brewing force in the area.
Nothing could better illustrate Highland’s leadership and creativity better than the seasonal release of Cold Mountain Winter Ale.
Since 1996, Cold Mountain has released a spiced winter ale just in time for the Holidays. The original 1996 vintage was named, simply Highland Brewing ‘Holiday Ale.’ But the following year, author, Charles Frazier, released his novel, “Cold Mountain,” and the book so captivated Highland’s founder, Oscar Wong, that in 1997 he re-named the brewery’s popular ‘Holiday Ale,’ “Cold Mountain.”
In successive years, Cold Mountain was termed a Winter Ale, and though the basic recipe has remained the same, each year a small panel of Highland’s brewers and a sensory scientists tweak the recipe, giving each year its own spice profile.
No two vintages of Highland’s Cold Mountain have been the same, but despite the variety, the popularity of Cold Mountain has grown year after year.
Highland’s Cold Mountain celebrated its 20thanniversary in 2016, with the addition of a higher gravity, Imperial Cold Mountain, also available in 22-ounce bottles, plus a Coconut-forward version of Cold Mountain served exclusively on tap at the brewery.
This year, in addition to calling Cold Mountain what it is — a “Spiced Ale” — the Highland team has ramped up the creativity with several company teams collaborating on unique Cask Offerings.
These Cask Offerings will be on tap (not in packaged sales) exclusively at Highland Brewing during Cold Mountain release weekend Nov. 8 – 10. Here’s the schedule, to guide you in planning your Cold Mountain weekend.
The Cask Offerings are in limited supply, so get ‘em while you can.
Cold Mountain 2018 Cask Schedule on tap
Thursday, Nov. 8
5 p.m. — S’more (Cinnamon & Cocoa nibs)
5 p.m. — Horchata (Lactose, Coconut, and Vanilla Bean)
6 p.m. — Rum-soaked Fig, Date and Cranberries
6 p.m. — Cayenne & Honey
7 p.m. — Whiskey-soaked Oak & Orange peel
7 p.m. — Banana Bread (Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Allspice and Coffee)
Friday, Nov. 9
5 p.m. — Rum-Soaked Raisins & Cinnamon
6 p.m. — Cocoa nibs & Raspberries
6 p.m. — French Toast (Ginger, Nutmeg, Cinnamon and Maple)
7 p.m. — Smoked Pumpkin, Toasted Pumpkin and Espresso
Saturday, Nov. 10
5 p.m. — Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Allspice, Ginger Vanilla Bean and Brown Sugar
6 p.m. — Orange & Cranberries
6 p.m. — Sorghum
7 p.m. — Coffee