If you’ve been a fan of Slick Nick for the past 20 years, then you may know that the “long winter ale” wasn’t named after a jolly, fat man dressed in red. Nope, Slick Nick is named after the song by Fishbone, a ska-funk band beloved by our VP and co-founder Kai Adams.
Slick Nick has been popular since we first started brewing it. You know what? Let’s let Kai tell the tale of the long winter ale…
When we were at our original location in South Portland, one of our first brewers and I wanted to come up with a winter ale recipe. At the time we were drinking Prelude from Shipyard, Celebration from Sierra Nevada, and we really loved Geary’s Hampshire Ale.
A lot of the seasonal malty beers coming out at the time were using things like cinnamon, nutmeg, orange peel, but we were not interested in that. Most breweries were using English Ale yeast, but we used Chico and Sierra Nevada yeasts, which gave us some nice esters without adding fruit or spice.
The recipe hasn’t changed much over the years. It’s still got a strong malt backbone, with traditional German and English hops. And at 7.2% it’s still got a high ABV – although that was considered really high at the time!
I’ve really been loving Slick this year. At the new brewhouse the malt comes out great and the color is gorgeous. We have a lot of hop-forward beers, so it’s great to offer something so malty. It’s the maltiness that makes it the perfect food beer too.
Slick Nick is available this winter, on tap at all our brewpubs and the Tasting Room. And if you need something more portable for ice fishing or snow shoeing, pick up a pack from the store or at any of our locations.