Go outside and look up to the sky. Leave your phone! Turn off your inner monologue and just gaze at whatever is there right now. Clouds. Stars. Birds. Breathe in. Exist in the bigness and the smallness of everything. Feel the expanse, the billions of years, the chaos that brought life. Now breathe out. In that brief moment, while you were just standing there doing nothing, thousands of new beers were created for you to enjoy. Neat, huh? Now quit being weird, head to your nearest brewery and behold the wonders of creation! Here are five such wonders to ponder this week.
Able Seedhouse + Brewery is smarter than you and has a great new IPA to try
Able Seedhouse + Brewery in Northeast Minneapolis is proud to unveil the newest addition to the brewery’s well-intentioned core beer offerings: Better Selves, an unfiltered IPA named after an elevation of thought and action. Able’s cloudy, super tropical Better Selves debuts in the brewery’s Minneapolis taproom on Friday, March 29.
“The name comes from author and naturalist William Wordsworth, who liked to explore his sense of self through solitude and nature,” says Casey Holley, Able Founder. “This has become a core tenet here at Able – expressing ourselves through art, nature, community and of course, beer.”
Similar to unfiltered hazy IPAs, Better Selves is built with a blend of tropical hops including Idaho 7, Bravo, and Ahtanum. White wheat and oats are added to balance out the bright citrus tones for a pillow-soft finish and smooth, silky mouth feel. The protein content in the wheat and oats gives the beer its cloudy consistency and milky straw hue. A 4.4% ABV also makes it a flavorful, versatile option rounding out Able’s core selection.
“Better Selves is not a version of what most people would call a hazy IPA,” says Able Head Brewer Bobby Blasey. “Ours is lighter, cleaner, and much more delicate. Often hazy IPA’s have twice the number of hops and a high ABV, which make them much bolder. Better Selves is mellow with an easy drinking nature.”
Twin Leaf Brewery releases a coffee-infused take on its flagship beer
Twin Leaf Brewery will release bottles of Point of Consciousness Coffee Tripel – a coffee-infused version of their flagship beer – alongside new bottles of Luminosity Belgian Tripel. This double bottle release is a continuation of their month-long, fifth anniversary celebration full of specialty bottle releases and nonprofit service initiatives.
Twin Leaf’s origins are deep-rooted in Belgian and English-style brews. Showcased as one on their original recipes, the Luminosity Belgian Tripel quickly became their flagship beer. Sitting at a 9.0% ABV, this tripel is fruity and slightly sweet, with notes of orange, banana, and spice – everything you would expect in a classic Belgian-style tripel. As its popularity grew over the years, owner and head brewer, Tim Weber, began to experiment with a variety of adjuncts and small batch spinoffs on the flagship tripel. Coffee was by far the most popular of those experimental brews. Guided by the experts at High Noon Coffee Roasters, Twin Leaf found the perfect roast to complement the beer.
“It’s always fun to collaborate with someone locally that is outside of the craft beer industry,” said Weber. “We actually went to High Noon’s roasting facility and did an informal cupping with them. We were able to sample several different roasts and find just the right fit for the coffee tripel.” The name of this beer draws inspiration from the cult classic read, A Clockwork Orange, and invites you to awaken your senses, explore, discover, and ultimately reach your ‘Point of Consciousness’.
Goose Island launches a dry hopped version of 312
I can already feel your scorn for including an Anheuser-Busch-owned beer on this week’s list, but this one feels newsworthy. Goose Island Beer Co.’s 312 brand will always have a special place in my heart as an early beer that drew me out of my taste cave and into the light that is craft beer. Well Goose Island recently released a Dry-Hopped version of this old staple — 312 Urban Wheat Ale. The beer has all of the lemony, doughy notes from the original 312, but with extra brightness from the additional hops added to the classic brew. It is now available nationwide.
I will drink whatever is on this bad ass poster from Banded Oak Brewing Co. and Odyssey Beerwerks
Inspired by the Blood And Sand cocktail, which traditionally is comprised of Scotch whisky, sweet vermouth, cherry brandy or liqueur (blood), and orange juice or flamed orange zest (sand), Banded Oak Brewing Co. teamed with Odyssey Beerwerks to create Blood and Beer for Collaboration Fest 2019. As the brewery explains:
“We started in December 2018 by brewing a traditional English Barleywine, then we divided it up to age in different spirit barrels. To avoid excess smokiness found in many Scotch barrels, we substituted bourbon barrels from our friends at Breckenridge Distillery to give a more rounded, smooth flavor. To create our own version of a cherry liqueur, we added tart cherries to a separate barleywine-filled Breck barrel. Finally, due to being unable to source barrels that have been used to age vermouth (note: these don’t really exist), we utilized a gin barrel from our Arvada neighbors at Talnua Distillery & Tasting Room (grand opening 3/16/19), along with botanicals, herbs, and spices in an effort to mimic the flavors of a sweet vermouth.”
Wild Leap’s Alpha Abstraction Double IPA series features the ‘Lotus hop’
Wild Leap Brew Co’s awesome Alpha Abstraction Double IPA series rolls on with edition No. 6, available across Georgia the third week of March. The Alpha Abstraction Double IPA series began as an idea to explore experimental hops and a chance to think creatively about new flavor profiles. Volume 6 follows that mission with the introduction of potentially the most abstract hop yet, the Lotus hop. Lotus hops are experimental in nature. They have been crossbred across several different hop varieties and until recently went under the name Experimental Hop #06297. This past February this experimental strand was dubbed ‘Lotus,’ symbolizing the rebirth and celebration of a hops harvest.
“This hop is incredibly unique and fresh,” explained Head Brewer Chris Elliott. “When we first received the shipment, the bag still had #06297 as the name!”
Fruity in nature, Lotus hops provide a warm, tropical combination of orange, vanilla and berry. “We first discovered these when we were looking for a perfect addition to Truck Chaser, but decided to save them for the Alpha 6 series,” said Elliott. “It turned out to be exactly what they said it would be – carrying strong notes of vanilla with an almost tropical punch flavor.”