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Hazy IPAs

Hazy IPAs, often referred to as New England IPAs (NEIPAs), have taken the craft beer world by storm. Characterized by their opaque appearance, juicy flavour profiles, and smooth mouthfeel, hazy IPAs have become a favorite among craft beer enthusiasts. This article explores the history, brewing process, and unique characteristics that set hazy IPAs apart from their clearer counterparts.

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Hazy IPAs – A Brief History

The hazy IPA trend originated in the early 2000s in the New England region of the United States. Breweries like The Alchemist, with their iconic Heady Topper, and Hill Farmstead led the charge, creating hazy IPAs that defied the traditional expectations of what an IPA should be. Unlike the clear, bitter IPAs of the West Coast, these new hazy IPAs were unfiltered, creating a hazy appearance and emphasizing fruity, juicy flavors over bitterness.

Hazy IPAs are known for their intense, juicy flavours and aromas. Common tasting notes in hazy IPAs include tropical fruits like mango, pineapple, and passionfruit, as well as citrus fruits like orange and grapefruit. The bitterness in hazy IPAs is usually low to moderate, making them approachable for those who might find traditional IPAs too harsh. The mouthfeel of hazy IPAs is often described as soft, pillowy, or creamy, thanks to the use of wheat and oats.

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Hazy IPAs – Brewing Process

The unique qualities of hazy IPAs come from specific brewing techniques and ingredients. Here’s an in-depth look at the brewing process of hazy IPAs:

  1. Ingredients for Hazy IPAs:
    • Malts: Brewers often use a higher proportion of wheat and oats in the grain bill for hazy IPAs. These grains contribute to the beer’s hazy appearance and creamy mouthfeel.
    • Hops: Hazy IPAs are heavily hopped, but the hops are added at different stages of the brewing process. Dry hopping (adding hops after fermentation) is a common practice in brewing hazy IPAs, enhancing the aromatic qualities without imparting as much bitterness.
  2. Yeast for Hazy IPAs: The choice of yeast strain is crucial in brewing hazy IPAs. Many hazy IPAs use English ale yeast, which tends to stay in suspension, contributing to the haze and fruity esters.
  3. Water Chemistry in Hazy IPAs: Adjusting the water profile to favour chloride over sulfate enhances the perception of a smoother, less bitter beer, which is a hallmark of hazy IPAs.
  4. Techniques in Brewing Hazy IPAs: Techniques like hop bursting (adding large amounts of hops late in the boil) and whirlpool hopping (adding hops during the whirlpool stage) maximize hop aroma and flavor without adding too much bitterness. Additionally, not filtering the beer retains the natural haze and enhances the juicy, full-bodied characteristics of hazy IPAs.

Hazy IPAs have reshaped the craft beer landscape, offering a new and exciting way to experience hops. The unique brewing process of hazy IPAs, emphasis on juicy flavors, and smooth mouthfeel have made them a favorite among many beer lovers. Whether you’re a seasoned beer drinker or just beginning your craft beer journey, hazy IPAs are a trend worth exploring. So, grab a can of hazy IPA, pour it into a glass, and enjoy the delicious haze. Cheers!

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Brand Name
True Story Brewing Co.
Product Name
Hazy IPA - Hazy Plan
Price
GBP 3.95
Product Availability
Available in Stock