With our Iron Hill collaboration, Twin Fin, it’s easy to focus our attention on all the great things: a collaboration with a regional chain of brewpubs that have been killing it in the brewing department with a portion of the proceeds going to support Surfrider Foundation South Jersey, an activist organization dedicated to the preservation of the world’s ocean.
With all of this awesome stuff, it’s easy to forget the most awesome part of this collaboration.
It’s a kettle-soured, session, New England IPA.
These bad boys are few and far between. Fans of Corrosion probably remember the awesomeness that it was. This is somewhat like that, but turned up to eleven on the juiciness scale with the ABV dialed back a hair.
“When was the last time you saw a kettle-soured session New England IPA?” asks Innovation Director Brian Hink, rhetorically. “Kettle sours are great, and NEIPAs are awesome, and the summer sessions are super refreshing, so why not just mash them all together?”
So, that’s totally what we did. We brewed up a killer IPA and soured it. We stayed basic on the malt bill and had a lot of fun with the hops and acid.
“Yeah, we played it safe with this one,” Brian says, regarding the malt bill of pilsner, wheat, and oats.
“We wanted the focus to be on the hops and the acidity, let them take the forefront,” he continues. “Then we tried to sneak a little more body into it with the wheat and oats to help it from getting too light-bodied and letting the acidity take center stage too much.”
We chose the hops bill to complement the acidity produced by the kettle souring with Lactobacillus.
“Decided to go with Denali and Idaho 7 on this one,“ Brian says.
We’ve been using a bit more Idaho 7 lately, in brews such as Aiding & A’bretting and Krusty’s Partially-Gelatinated Non-Dairy Gum-Based Beverage.
“Combined with Denali, we’ll see lots of pineapple,” Brian says, “which pairs really well off the acidity. Blend that with flavors of lemon and tropical fruits, and we’ve got a tremendously juicy and citrusy beer.”
Lab Manager Lauren Appleman has a great time brewing sours. They can be a little tricky — sometimes those yeasties have a mind of their own — but Twin Fin toed the line.
“For the science nerd in me, kettle sours are fun to do,” she says. “You can physically track the pH of the wort and know that the Lacto is doing its job. However, the Lacto doesn’t always work as fast as we would like it to and that can be a little stressful as a production brewery. Twin Fin had none of those issues and worked just as expected.”
We’ve also switched up the fermenting yeast a bit. Whereas we’d normally use our House Ale yeast in something like this, we went with London Ale III.
“London is slowly becoming our house ale, finding its way into many of our beers,” Brian explains. “It’s just a more characterful yeast. It accentuates the hops more, giving the final beer more of a well-rounded mouthfeel.”
“It’s super tropical and citrusy, really bright and lively,” Brian says. “It really just jumps out of the glass and is totally refreshing.”
Lauren’s been enjoying it, as well.
“I’m loving this beer and it will do good to fill the Corrosion-sized hole in my heart,” Lauren says. “I plan on keeping a few of these around because this is a great anytime beer for whatever occasion.”
Sounds like the perfect brew to benefit Surfrider Foundation South Jersey, and we couldn’t be more excited for it to finally come out.
“We’ve been talking with the Iron Hill crew since October about this,” Brian says. “I’m so glad that Twin Fin is finally seeing the light of day.”
Swing down to the brewery this weekend! We’ll be donating $1 from the sale of every pint, tasting, and 4-pack of Twin Fin to Surfrider all weekend long!