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New England IPAs: Embracing Hazy and Juicy Delights


New England IPAs (NEIPAs) have taken the beer world by storm with their hazy appearance, juicy flavours, and emphasis on hop aroma. These beers, also known as hazy IPAs, stand in contrast to their clear and bitter West Coast counterparts. In this blog post, we will delve into the origins and brewing techniques of New England IPAs, explore the characteristics that make them unique, and highlight notable examples of this popular beer style.

Origins of New England IPAs

Challenging Traditional IPAs

New England IPAs emerged as a response to the hop-forward and bitter IPAs that dominated the beer scene. Brewers in the New England region of the United States sought to create a beer that emphasized hop aroma and flavour while minimizing bitterness. The goal was to craft a beer that was both approachable and bursting with juicy hop goodness.

The Birth of Hazy IPAs

Hazy IPAs gained traction in the early 2010s, with The Alchemist’s “Heady Topper” and Tree House Brewing Company’s “Julius” leading the way. These beers showcased a hazy appearance, soft mouthfeel, and intense hop aroma, creating a new style that would captivate beer enthusiasts around the world.

Brewing Techniques for New England IPAs

Grain Bill and Malt Selection

New England IPAs utilize a grain bill that includes a significant portion of malted barley and often incorporates adjunct grains like wheat or oats. These adjuncts contribute to the beer’s hazy appearance, smooth mouthfeel, and enhanced protein content, which aids in creating a more stable and longer-lasting hop haze.

Hop Selection and Late Hopping

Hop selection is crucial in achieving the characteristic juicy flavours of New England IPAs. Brewers often opt for hop varieties with tropical, citrus, or stone fruit characteristics, such as Citra, Mosaic, Galaxy, or Amarillo. Late hopping techniques, such as whirlpool additions or dry hopping during or after fermentation, maximize hop aroma and minimize bitterness.

Yeast Strains and Bi-Transparency

New England IPAs employ specific yeast strains known for their ability to produce fruity esters and enhance hop character. These strains can also contribute to the beer’s haze, along with hop polyphenols and proteins. Bi-Transparency, the balance between yeast haze and hop haze, is sought after in New England IPAs, resulting in a visually appealing and flavorful beer.

Characteristics of New England IPAs

Hazy Appearance

The hallmark of New England IPAs is their cloudy and hazy appearance, resembling a glass of fresh fruit juice. This haze is a result of proteins, hop compounds, and yeast in suspension, creating a visually appealing and enticing beer.

Juicy Hop Flavors

New England IPAs burst with juicy hop flavours that can range from tropical fruits like mango, pineapple, and passion fruit to citrus notes of grapefruit, orange, and tangerine. These beers exhibit a fruit-forward profile that showcases the aromatic qualities of hops.

Soft and Smooth Mouthfeel

New England IPAs offer a velvety and soft mouthfeel, thanks to the use of adjunct grains like wheat or oats. This adds a smooth texture that enhances the overall drinking experience and complements the juicy hop flavours.

Notable Examples of New England IPAs

Showcase of Breweries

Several breweries have gained recognition for their outstanding New England IPAs. Some notable examples include BrewDog’s Triple Hazy JaneNorthern Monk’sHeathen,” Beavertown’s Space Hulk,” and Other Half Brewing Company’s “All Citra Everything.” These breweries have mastered the art of brewing hazy and juicy IPAs, becoming synonymous with the style.

Flavour Profiles

Each New England IPA brings its own unique flavour profile to the table. “Triple Hazy Jane” is known for its intense hop aroma and complex blend of tropical and citrus flavours. “Heathen” juicy, hazy appearance and tropical fruit flavours. “Space Hulk” delights with fruity and resinous hops, with notes of grapefruit, pine, and tropical fruit. “All Citra Everything” showcases the vibrant citrus and tropical fruit notes of Citra hops.

Embracing the New England IPA Experience

Serving and Enjoyment

To fully enjoy the flavours and aromas of a New England IPA, serve the beer at a slightly cooler temperature, around 6-8°C (43-46°F), in a glass that allows the aromas to concentrate, such as a tulip or an IPA glass. Take your time to appreciate the hazy appearance, inhale the enticing hop aromas, and let the soft and juicy flavours dance on your palate. Savour each sip and revel in the delightful experience that New England IPAs have to offer.

Food Pairings

New England IPAs pair well with a variety of foods, thanks to their juicy hop character and soft mouthfeel. They complement spicy dishes, such as Indian or Thai cuisine, and balance the heat with their fruity flavours. The citrus and tropical fruit notes of these IPAs also make them a great accompaniment to seafood, grilled chicken, fresh salads, and light cheeses.

New England IPAs have revolutionized the IPA landscape with their hazy appearance, juicy flavours, and emphasis on hop aroma. From their humble beginnings in the New England region of the United States, these beers have gained worldwide popularity and captivated beer enthusiasts with their unique characteristics. Whether you’re drawn to the hazy appearance, the burst of juicy hop flavours, or the smooth mouthfeel, New England IPAs offer a refreshing and enjoyable drinking experience. So, embrace the haze, indulge in the juiciness, and embark on a flavorful journey with a glass of your favourite New England IPA in hand.