Engineering Their Own Beer

Have you ever wanted to engineer your own beer? Wanted the opportunity to work with a seasoned brewer to formulate a beer that you’ve always wanted to taste? Well the folks at Civil Design and Engineering Inc. in Flagstaff got to do just that.

They knew that they wanted to make something extra special to give to their employees and their clients this year for the holidays, and that’s where we at Historic stepped in to help make that dream a reality. CDE approached us earlier this year with the proposition of brewing two distinct beers that would be made specially for them and later canned as gifts to the people in their company and their clients that work so hard all year. We knew this would be something fun and unique and we couldn’t wait to work with their team to brew something great.

Over the course of a few months we were able to help them engineer two beers that were perfect for them. Our head brewer, Zack, sat down with a few members of their team and brought them out different hops, different malts, and a few samplings of our own beers to get clear on what it is they wanted. They knew that they wanted to brew one IPA and one Porter so that narrowed it down, and from there Zack worked with them to decide on flavor characteristics, bases of the beers, and the specific taste that they were going for.

A group of employees from Civil Design and Engineering Inc. then joined us over the course of two different weekends to be a part of the brew. They worked with our Assistant Brewer, Austin, to start the brewing process and get a deeper understanding on how their beer would be made. From there the fermenting magic happened and about five weeks later their beers were kegged out into this world.

The end result was a piney, citrus IPA and a Hazelnut and Cacao Nib Porter. The IPA has an IBU of 6.6% and an ABV of 77 with a maltier base, more similar to an East Coast style IPA than some of the other IPAs that we have brewed in the past. It has Amarillo, Centennial, Columbus, and Nugget hops which all work together to create the bitter, pine, and citrus flavors that CDE wanted to achieve. This beer is malty, while still having lots of hop flavors, and different than other beers we’ve brewed in the past as it was engineered to meet the desires of CDE.


The Hazelnut and Cacao Nib Porter is a big, bold Porter, closer to an Imperial, with an ABV of 7.5% and an IBU of 14. They designed this beer after tasting Pete’s Hazy Nuts, a Hazelnut Porter we had on draft a few months ago, but we made this beer even bigger and more special by adding in more chocolate flavors with the cacao nibs and making it an Imperial with a high ABV. It’s the perfect beer for a celebration and a great way to thank the special people in their firm.

Working with a local business to create two unique and special beers was an awesome experience and something we’d love to do again. The process of engineering and designing their own beer really spoke to the team at Civil Design and Engineering Inc. and was totally up our alley as well. They now have two extraordinary gifts for their team and got to be a part of the deciding, the actual brew, and have a tasting afterward at our brewery that truly made them a part of the experience. If you’re interested in designing your own brew for your company or organization contact us at info@historicbrewingcompany.com.