When people see me day drinking and say “Guess it’s five o’clock somewhere,” I say, “It’s actually five o’clock nowhere because time is just a construct, a quirk of our brains. There is only the present moment. So. Have a beer.” Luckily, they never do. Here are some beers to know this week.
Survey says customers are into wellness, so Harpoon Brewery takes a full-flavored version of its session year-round
Harpoon Big League IPA is Harpoon Brewery’s newest year-round offering is a full-flavored version of its lighter, sessionable cousin Harpoon Rec. League. The brewers at Harpoon took the same hazy pale ale recipe, multiplied everything by two, and created a crushable hazy IPA. Big League is brewed with a blend of Cascade, Simcoe, Citra, and Mosaic hops for an extra refreshing, tropical fruit-filled sip every time. Containing chia seeds and buckwheat kasha that are high in nutrients and Mediterranean sea salt for an added source of electrolytes, this 7.2% ABV beer packs in the flavor.
“The response to the launch of Rec. League was bigger and better than we could have imagined, and it proved that there was a thirst for more options that offered full flavor without the heaviness of a most IPAs,” said Dan Kenary, CEO and co-founder of Harpoon Brewery. “Following a year where people were more often at home, we knew we needed to give them a way to celebrate the small moments that turned into big wins, without feeling like they’ve overindulged. Big League is our answer to that.”
What was different about brewing with the specialty ingredients in Big League?
“We have a pretty good system in place at this point after brewing Rec. League for two years— because Buckwheat is a pseudocereal, it acts a lot like barley, wheat, or other common brewing grains, so we treat it like one and add it straight into the mash,” says Harpoon Brewery’s Chief Brewing Officer, Al Marzi. “Chia seeds are little more temperamental. To get better extraction, we have the seeds milled down into a flour and add them in the whirlpool. This also helps a bit with haze stability in the finished beer.”
Essentially doubling Rec League’s ingredients means Big League is more expensive to produce, which is why the team considered pricing it like a limited release despite going year-round.
“But at the end of the day, we want this to be a beer that people drink regularly, so we’re eating some of that cost so consumers get a better value, particularly with the 12-packs,” Marzi tells us.
The new beer comes as Americans are taking a stronger interest in their health and wellness amid the pandemic, without wanting to sacrifice their favorite foods and drinks, according to a new survey by Harpoon Brewery.
Top findings from the survey of 949 adults aged 21+ include:
- More than two-thirds (68%) of Americans are more focused on healthy eating and drinking habits now compared to a year ago
- 71% of respondents say they consider eating and drinking items they enjoy – regardless of their nutritional value, in moderation – a form of wellness
- When describing their approach to wellness during the pandemic, 44% of Millennials say they make better food and drink choices than they did before the pandemic, compared to 34% of Gen Xers
- 52% of Millennials say that better-for-you ingredients impact their decision more now when selecting a craft beer compared to a year ago, while only a quarter (26%) of Gen Xers feels the same
LUKI Brewery, 4 Noses Brewing releasing their Pink Boots collab
LUKI Brewery and 4 Noses Brewing, in collaboration with the Pink Boots Society (PBS) Boulder chapter, will release Pink Cyclone, a White IPA, on March 26 at both taprooms, as well as at Wild Provisions Beer Project. This collaboration beer was brewed on International Women’s Day on March 8 with PBS Boulder chapter members, including chapter leads Cammy Smith of LUKI Brewery, Amanda Oberbroeckling of 4 Noses Brewing and employees of Someplace Else Brewery and Sanitas Brewing Company. $1 from each pint will be donated to the PBS Boulder chapter.
Using a Pink Boots Hop blend from Yakima Chief Hops that includes Cashmere, Ahtanum, Citra, Loral and Sabro hops, Pink Cyclone pays homage to PBS in both name and beer, with a whirlwind of hop additions added every five minutes to a Belgian Wit malt bill and an additional dry hop a week later to provide a delicious White IPA with tons of hop character and tropical, citrus and herbal notes.
Flying Dog with an homage to Zoom call life
We’ve all had that moment, where you launch full tilt into a masterclass of conversational genius, only to be told, “you’re on mute.” Flying Dog is paying tribute to those moments from this year where you just couldn’t get a handle on your audio button with the brewery’s new Cabin Fever Red Ale called You’re on Mute.
Crafted to take the edge off a day full of virtual meetings that could have been emails, this medium-bodied Red Ale balances toasted malts, and just a hint of chocolate, with a perfectly engineered blend of hops and aromas. You’re on Mute Cabin Fever Red Ale is brewed with Galaxy hops and carries a 6.2% ABV with 25 IBUs.
“A unifying experience for people this year has been the transition to working from home and all of the ups and downs that come with that shift,” said James Maravetz, VP of Marketing for Flying Dog Brewery. “Technology brings with it challenges as well as comedy, and the fact that without fail, you have at some point, been on mute.”
Odell Brewing adds a golden ale as year-round charitable, outreach beer
Odell Brewing announced the latest addition to their year-round lineup, Kindling, a refreshing Golden Ale with aromas of crisp malts and subtle citrus. Kindling will serve as the spokes-beer for the brewery’s charitable program and community outreach. For many nonprofit organizations the focus is doing the work for the community they serve but their message doesn’t always reach a larger, broader audience. Odell Brewing will use Kindling Golden Ale as a platform to share the impact their partners make, amplify their message, and engage with new audiences.
“We’ve given Kindling a job to do, to share the Odell tradition of making a lasting positive impact in the communities where we do business,” explains Karla Baise of Odell Brewing’s Community Outreach. “This beer will tell the stories of the great work that our charitable partners do and invite fans to join us at our metaphorical campfire to raise a glass and toast to the impact our partners make.”
With the launch of Kindling Golden Ale, Odell Brewing has renamed their platform, “Odell Gives Back 1%”, which represents the brewery’s commitment to giving 1% of all revenue to their charitable programs and community outreach.
Living The Dream’s Horchata Powder Run variant hits the slopes
Living The Dream Brewing canned a fresh batch of the popular Horchata variant of its award-winning Powder Run Cream Ale this week. The Horchata Powder Run will be available in cans on Colorado’s Front Range and at the brewery tasting room while supplies last.
Living The Dream’s award-winning Cream Ale— a light bodied, creamy ale with notes of vanilla and a fluffy finishing mouthfeel— gets a boost of spicy cinnamon and creamy vanilla flavors from Colorado’s local Savory Spice Shop in this recipe that expands upon the Powder Run variant line. This is the second of the Powder Run variants to hit a can, following the Gingerbread Powder Run that sold out in less than a week in December. Past draft-only variants have included Tangerine and Vanilla Cream.
Many of Living The Dream’s beers are born out of collaborations focused on high-quality, natural ingredients— and the Horchata Powder Run is no exception. Living The Dream partnered up with Estrella De Colima to craft this Mexican-style rendition of its flagship Cream Ale.
Great art on this new Tröegs Double IPA
Tröegs Independent Brewing has released LolliHop, a soft, citrusy and slightly hazy Double IPA with notes of pear, citrus and a hint of melon. The inspiration for LolliHop begins in the hop fields of Yakima Valley, Washington, during the brewery’s annual pilgrimage to this hop-growing hotbed. “We’re like kids in a candy store,” explains Tröegs co-founding brother and brewmaster, John Trogner. “We eyeball the hops, crush them in our hands and rub them til their oils fill the air.”
LolliHop worked its way through the brewery’s small-batch Scratch Series, starting with #327, an IPA hopped with Citra and Mosaic. “There’s only a handful of beers that have an ‘a-aha’ origin,” says Trogner. “And LolliHop is one of them.”
For the backbone, LolliHop utilizes Pennsylvania-grown Rustic pale malt from nearby Double Eagle, while a portion of wheat and oats give the beer a silky smooth texture with a touch of haze. The otherworldly label art was dreamed up Baltimore, MD-based artist and Art of Tröegs alum Devin Watson, who took inspiration from the brewery’s quest to discover a winning hop combination.
West Brew, Thr3e Punk Ales enter March Madness with SDSU basketball
For March Madness, WestBrew and Thr3e Punk Ales are collaborating on an SDSU basketball inspired beer named Monty’s Revenge, a hoppy red ale balancing caramel and toffee flavor from the malt with citrus and floral note from the hops. WestBrew and Thr3ee Punk Ales have a history through the SDSU Business of Craft Beer Program which brought them to create this Hoppy Red Ale. WestBrew owner Josh Schreer and Thr3e Punks Ale owners Kevin Lewis and Steve Garcia all graduated the SDSU Business of Craft Beer program while WestBrew General Manager Matt Johnson is an instructor in the program.
“We were super excited to collaborate on this beer with WestBrew and come full circle from the SDSU beer program.” said Kevin Lewis a partner at Thr3e Punks Ales. Josh Schreer owner from WestBrew added “This beer will be a great blend of our styles and represent SDSU well.”
Artisanal Imports brings bottle conditioned St. Feuillien FIVE to the states
Artisanal Imports announced that world-renowned Belgian brewer Brasserie St. Feuillien has added a new bottle-conditioned specialty Belgian Blond Ale to its offerings with St. Feuillien FIVE, which is now available nationwide in draft format with bottles following in late April.
St. Feuillien FIVE is a refreshing 5% ABV bottle-conditioned pale blond ale with a strong, sparkling character emitting fine bubbles. Delicate fruity hints empowered by nuances of citrus zests give way to a delightfully fresh and hoppy aroma. It is a flavorful, sweet and malty and full-bodied beer with a pleasant balance post-bitterness, and it pours with a stable head of white foam.