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Grassfed 2.0: New Take on an Old Favorite

Grassfed Blonde Ale is back! If you’re an OG Historic Brewing Company fan you’ve definitely heard of and probably tried Grassfed Blonde, our Lemongrass Blonde, known for it’s fresh flavor and easy drinking nature. It’s been quite a while since we’ve brewed this tasty beer, but with summer finally here and our nostalgic nature, we figured we’d bring back this classic brew.

This year’s Grassfed Blonde is version 2.0 because we changed it up slightly, using different hops to bring out more of a melon, fruit forward characteristic to the beer. Grassfed 2.0 was also brewed for charity, making it extra special. This brew was made for the Museum of Northern Arizona and their annual Gala event. This year the Museum of Northern Arizona is celebrating their 90th anniversary and featuring nine cutting-edge artists at their Gala, and we were lucky enough to pair with them yet again to make a beer that celebrates their event and all that they do for the local community.

Grassfed 2.0 has an ABV of 5.3% and an IBU of 20. This beer is straw in color with an aroma full of malt sweetness, honeydew, and fresh cut grass. It is a light, easy drinking blonde with flavor notes of cereal grains, lemongrass, melon, and a touch of sweetness from the large malt bill. This beer is soft and smooth, with some bright flavors that round it out and make it unique. It was dry hopped with fresh lemongrass, and while the lemongrass brings in a crisp herbal quality to the beer, it is a subtle flavor that perfectly compliments the malt in the beer.

 
blonde ale
 

This beer was brewed with 2-row, Pilsner, Vienna, Victory, and Flaked Wheat malt, as well as Magnum and Pekko hops for bittering and flavor. One of the employees from the Museum of Arizona, plus a few of their awesome members were present for the brewing day of this beer, and got their hands dirty adding malt to the tanks and learning about how to brew beer.

We will be releasing Grassfed 2.0 Blonde Ale at our locations as early as June 14th, and it will also be poured at the Museum of Northern Arizona’s Gala on June 22nd. There are tickets for this event on their website, as well as more information on their current art exhibits and the many ways that you can support the Museum. Grassfed 2.0 is a new take on an old favorite, not only in flavor but also because this time around it’s helping build community and supporting one of our favorite local organizations in Flagstaff. It’s a small batch beer so drink it while you can, because who knows when Grassfed 3.0 will make it’s debut.



Experimental Hops & Experimental Beers

One of the best things about working in the beer industry is constantly getting to try new things and get experimental, all in the hopes of delicious results. While not every new idea works out, sometimes they do and damn do those wins taste good. Our latest beer, Experimental Probability IPA, is a hazy West Coast style IPA that is bold in taste and was brewed with a combination of experimental hops, so new they don’t even have names yet.

Experimental Probability IPA is medium straw in color, with an IBU of 80 and an ABV of 6.4%. It has a fruity hop aroma and flavor notes of pineapple, black currant, and lemon curd. This India Pale Ale has strong hop flavors throughout, with a pleasant bitter finish and little to no malt characteristics. It is true to style with it’s big hop flavor and solid bitterness, but switches it up with the unique characteristics from the experimental hops.

 
Experimental Probability
 

We brewed this beer as a single infusion mash but added in extra IBUs for bittering to make it more of a West Coast style IPA, which are known for their long lasting bitter flavors. We also dry hopped this beer with the experimental hops, which brought out more of the black currant flavor throughout the beer. We previously used these experimental hops in our Mall Crawler IPL, and liked the flavors so much we decided to play with them again in this beer.

Experimental Probability IPA will be on tap as early as June 1st in our locations, and is perfect for anyone who loves IPAs and wants something with strong hop flavors and little to no malt. It’s a new and fun Historic beer, and while we weighed the probabilities to see if it was going to work - this experiment turned out damn good.



Recipe Feature: Opposable IPA Hummus

Love hummus and also love beer? We’ve got the perfect recipe for you then! This creamy dip is the ideal appetizer to make for all your summer parties, BBQs, and get togethers. Plus it’s made with our delicious IPA Opposable which takes this hummus to the next level, making it unique and extra special. The Opposable IPA hummus is made with minimal ingredients, is full of flavor, and is easy to make (even for those who ruin everything in the kitchen). Make a big batch in advance to eat throughout the week or bring it along to share with friends during any summer event you have planned. Serve with chopped vegetables, tortilla chips, or pita and you’ve got your new go-to summer snack.



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Opposable IPA Hummus

-2 cans of rinsed chickpeas

-2 large cloves of minced garlic

-½ cup of tahini

-1 tablespoon of olive oil

-2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice

-⅓ cup of Opposable IPA

-1 teaspoon of salt

Optional: Add in chili powder, fresh herbs, or jalapeno for even more kick.

1. Combine all ingredients except for beer in high speed blender or food processor.

2, Once well combined slowly add in beer until desired consistency.

3. Store in airtight container in refrigerator for 1-2 hours for flavors to meld.

4. Garnish with smoked paprika powder and serve.

What's the Deal with IBU?

IBU, or International Bitterness Units, if that number you see on tap signs, on the side of your beer can, and the thing you hear your hop head friend bragging about as he sips the latest double IPA. While we might all guess that based on the name it has something to do with how bitter the beer is - what does IBU really mean and how does it affect the taste of your beer, the style of beer, and everything else?

If we want to get technical, IBU measures the parts per million of isohumulones and other chemical compounds in a particular beer, which make up the acids found in hops that gives beer its bitter taste. However, there are a number of factors that go into how “bitter” a beer is and sometimes what is listed as a beer’s IBU, while scientifically accurate, this isn’t the whole story. A beer with a large malt profile, while also high in IBU, could be way less bitter and hop forward than a beer with a lower IBU that also a smaller malt profile. There’s also the element of extra added ingredients, such as coffee, spices, or fruit, that could give a higher or lower perceived bitterness while not affecting the IBU of the beer.

 
Hoppy
 

So why the heck do we use this scale if it isn’t even accurate to taste? Well, because we are humans and we like to categorize things, but also it generally helps the consumer get a better idea of how the beer is going to taste when they order it. While knowing styles and other factors is also important, a person who generally goes for Porters and Stouts which have a lower IBU and a low amount of hops in the beer is going to know that they probably shouldn’t order the IPA on the menu with an IBU of 75. The IBU scale generally starts at 5 and ends around 120, however the IBU limit is infinite and I’m sure there will be plenty of brewers trying to push the envelope in the future as the trend of bigger and bolder beers continues to grow.

While IBU helps give the beer drinker clues about what they’re about to drink, it also helps the brewers know that they are on track when brewing different styles of beer or producing large amounts of one of their mainstay beers. If the IBUs are out of whack or not what they’re expecting, they know that something has gone wrong and it’s time to go back to the drawing board. So while IBU might not tell you everything you want to know about your beer and the true bitterness of your brew is variable depending on other factors, it is an important tool for both the consumer and maker of the beer and it can help you up your beer knowledge as a whole making you seem smarter and way more cool in front of all of your friends.



Powell Expedition Lager: A Celebration of Exploration

On May 24th, 1869, ten explorers began their 900 mile expedition to explore the “great unknown” beginning in Green River, Wyoming and traveling through treacherous river systems to end in present day Lake Mead. This journey was led by John Wesley Powell and the men who made it through the 95 day trip are responsible for much of the earliest known maps and information about the Grand Canyon and the river systems that run through this once undiscovered portion of the West. This year marks the 150th anniversary of this incredible expedition, and in collaboration with the Arizona Historical Society and the Pioneer Museum we created a beer that celebrates this exploration and our continued education about this region of the world that we are lucky enough to call home.

The Powell Expedition Lager, is not only an ode to the men who went on that first journey to discover unknown lands, but it is also a brew that pays homage to the beers of the past. This Lager was brewed with Cascade hops, which is the quintessential American hop and is most like the wild American hops that would have been growing around the time of the first expedition. This beer was also brewed with Magnum hops for bittering and Pilsner, Vienna, Wheat, and Caramel Pils Malts. It has an IBU of 28 and an ABV of 4.5%, making it the perfect easy drinking Lager for any of your own adventures

 
kegging lager
 

This speciality Lager has an aroma of cereal grains, lime peel, and the subtle aromatics of sweet honey. It is light straw in color and has flavor notes of citrus peel and citrus fruit, lager and malt grains, with some bitterness in the finish that does not linger but instead finishes crisp like a good Lager should. The Powell Expedition Lager is perfect for both newcomers to craft beer and those who just want a legendary Lager that is light and refreshing. It is a great beer to drink after a long hike or a day exploring the Grand Canyon like John Wesley Powell did many years ago.

This beer will be released for the first time on May 23rd at the Beer Release Party at our Eastside Brewery location in Flagstaff from 4-7pm. It will then be at the event put on by the Arizona Historical Society at the Pioneer Museum in Flagstaff on May 24th to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the first expedition. This event is from 6-8:30pm and is free to the public. The Powell Expedition Lager will be on tap and there will be 150 commemorative pint glasses available for purchase as well.  Details for both events will be linked below, but be sure to come support both Historic and the Arizona Historical Society as we celebrate all things exploration with the Powell Expedition Lager!



Nobody Likes a Mall Crawler

Nobody likes a mall crawler…. We’re joking of course, but there is something to be said about those that build awesome rigs and don’t use them to go on awesome adventures. Here at Historic Brewing Company though we are all about adventures, the rigs that get us there, and the beer we pack with us to drink after we get to our incredible outdoor destinations.

Our latest beer, the Mall Crawler IPL, is a not only a collaboration beer with KC HiLiTES and OVRLND Campers, but it is also a celebration of all things outdoors, exploration, and adventure. The idea for this beer was inspired by Overland Expo West, a huge weekend long expo that combines seminars, a film festival, a trade show and more. This expo takes place in our very own hometown of Flagstaff from May 17-19th and brings in adventure enthusiasts from all over the world. Both of the companies we collaborated with on this beer will be at Overland Expo and create awesome products that you should definitely check out! (Their websites are linked below.)

The Mall Crawler IPL, an India Pale Lager, is a hybrid style between an IPA and a Lager. This balanced beer has the hop flavor of an IPA without being too aggressive, and the crisp clean finish of a lager. It has an IBU of 55 and an ABV of 5% and is straw in color. On the nose this beer smells slightly sweet, with a hint of pineapple, and some cereal grain fragrance. The flavor of this beer is quite similar to the smell, with a light tropical hop which compliments the malt, grain flavors. It finishes like a lager but also has a slight bitter lingering finish and as our Head Brewer Zack describes “it’s too drinkable”.

 
Reaching for Maibock
 

This beer was brewed as a straightforward mash infusion, and then lagered in cold temperatures for 3 weeks, but it is different from other IPLs we have brewed in the past because we brewed this beer with experimental hops. The hops we used in the Mall Crawler IPL come from Hopsteiner, a US based Hop company, and these hops are so new that they only have numbers for names. While we didn’t know exactly what we were going to think of these hops, we are really impressed by how they worked in this beer and we can’t wait to use them in a small batch IPA later on this year as well.

Mall Crawler IPL was brewed with the awesome guys from both KC HiLiTES and OVRLND Campers, and while they didn’t know each other before the brew, this beer has been the perfect tool to connect community and share inspiration for future projects and events. This beer  is perfect for the Lager drinker who wants to switch it up a bit, or an IPA drinker who just wants to session some beer. It’s an easy drinking, slightly hoppy, and wildly delicious beer that we can’t wait to share with everyone in town for the Overland Expo and just all of our local Historic fans as well. This beer will be released on the 10th of May and will be at all of our locations while it lasts so come grab a pint or two and show some support for local businesses and our collective love of getting outdoors and the rigs that get us there.

KC HiLiTES: https://www.kchilites.com/

OVRLND Campers: https://campovrlnd.com/