The Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation collaborated closely with Cigar City Brewing over several months to develop Cow Boss Imperial Milk Stout, an authentic, Florida-sourced craft beer. Aged over Florida Cypress wood, Cow Boss will be available in mid-June in 22-oz bottles and on draft throughout Florida for a limited time. Cigar City Brewing will make a donation to the Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation in support of their mission to preserve the history, heritage and ideals of Florida cattle producers.
“We couldn’t be more proud to collaborate with Cigar City Brewing to develop Cow Boss. The Cigar City Brewing team and skill set are exceptional. Their ability to highlight authentic Florida, helps tell the story of the Florida cattle rancher to those who may not know of us,” notes Jim Strickland, past-Chairman of the Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation (Strickland initiated the collaboration during his tenure). “Additionally, their generosity to help support the Foundation with a donation is further reinforcement of their commitment to the Florida Cattle ranching community.”
“I wanted to make a beer that not only included indigenous raw materials, like Florida cypress, but also an ingredient that tied the beer to the cattle as well. Lactose is a non-fermentable milk sugar that adds body and sweetness to the beer. Cypress can add a sponge cake to vanilla wafer-like character to the beer. I decided to make a beer that leaned towards a dessert offering at that point, which brought back memories of my grandmother’s chocolate layer cake that she used to make me when I was a child,” notes Wayne Wambles, brew master at Cigar City Brewing.
The Cow Boss label was designed by cattle rancher and artist, Sean Sexton, of Vero Beach. Sexton manages a family owned 700-Acre Cow-Calf operation in Indian River County. He is represented in private and public art collections throughout the Southeast and received a Florida Individual Artist’s Fellowship in 2001. The label features a Cracker Cow, headed out of the scrub toward the herd with the “cow boss” on his horse and his dog, following closely behind— a common sight on working Florida cattle ranches.
The name, Cow Boss, depicts the one in charge of the cattle operation on a ranch. The Cow Boss chooses where the cowboys will ride and is ultimately responsible for any and all cowboys hired.
“Cigar City Brewing considered several names for this special brew. They kindly allowed us to recommend the final name, Cow Boss. This name and the artistic depiction on the label really conveys the lifestyle of the Florida cattle rancher,” notes Tommy Harper, Chairman of the Florida Cattleman’s Foundation. “We have a story to tell about the impact of the Florida cattle industry and what the Foundation is doing to preserve it’s history and heritage. Cow Boss can help begin a conversation about the Florida cattle rancher to a wider audience.”
The beer was aged over Florida Cypress wood. The Florida Cypress was sourced and donated by Kempfer Cattle Company and Kempfer Sawmill. This cypress wood was critical to the aging and taste profile of Cow Boss Imperial Milk Stout.
The Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation plans to utilize the donation of $10,000 from a portion of the proceeds made by Cigar City Brewing to support the Florida Cattlemen’s Leadership Academy. The Leadership Academy was created with the goal of identifying and developing future leaders for both the Florida Cattlemen’s Association (FCA) and the Florida Cattle industry, as a whole.
From Beer to Beef
In addition to the development of this craft beer honoring the Florida cattle ranching industry, James Beard Award nominee and chef, Greg Baker, of The Refinery and Fodder & Shine in Tampa, kindly developed a beef and beer pairing recipe in support of the collaboration between Cigar City Brewing and the Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation. (The recipe and photo for Baker’s Peach & Coffee Braised Beef Shanks is attached).
“We greatly appreciate the attention and support of such a high caliber chef as Greg Baker. Known not only for his outstanding skills as a chef, but also for his appreciation and dedication to Florida heritage, this recipe pairs the skills of Cigar City’s brewing team led by Wayne Wambles with notable, James Beard Award nominated chef, Greg Baker, and honors the Florida Cattle ranching industry in a winning culinary combination,” notes Ashley Hughes with the Florida Beef Council.
About the Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation
The Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation, founded in 1999, is a non-profit 501 (c-3) organization dedicated to the preservation of the history, heritage and ideals of Florida cattle producers. The Foundation promotes a sustainable cattle industry by building viable programs in scholarship, continuing education, research and leadership development both for the current industry and its leaders as well as for future leaders to come.
The Foundation is committed to creating and maintaining a strong environmental stewardship initiative to enhance and ensure the integrity of wildlife, land, water and air so the cattle industry will flourish within an environment that is best for all citizens of Florida.
The Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation actively raises funds in support of a wide variety of projects and other activities. For more information on the Foundation, go to www.floridacattlemen.org/foundation/.
About Cigar City Brewing
Cigar City Brewing has become a major attraction for those who appreciate and seek out excellent beer. Many of the beers they produce reflect the sensibilities and ingredients of Florida. Their philosophy is that quality is achieved by giving first rate ingredients to first rate people in a space where they are free to pursue their passion. With five American Beer Festival Medals (three of which are gold) and four brews in the top 50 on RateBeer.com, Cigar City Brewing produces 34,000 barrels per year, with the most popular brews including Jai Alai IPA and Florida Cracker White Ale. For more information, go to www.cigarcitybrewing.com.
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Cow Boss Imperial Milk Stout
A big bold beer – very dark, imperial stout. Aged over Florida Cypress wood, Cow Boss has notes of angel food / sponge cake.
With a reasonable amount of barley, this beer boasts hints of a chocolate malt flavor, an un-sweet chocolate rounded by lactose semi-sweet to sweet, darker salted caramel. Also notable are hints of coffee, raspberries and raisin notes.
Style: Imperial Stout
ABV: 10% ABV
Available in a 22-oz. bottle, this beer is perfect for sharing with friends after dinner.