New Belgium Brewing in Fort Collins will debut a new series of seasonal beers this year, most of them focused on a new or unsual variety of hops. The Hop Kitchen beers, as the series is called, will be sold only in 22-ounce bomber bottles and on draft.
"People want what is new and what is fresh, so this keeps things fresh, not just for customers, but also for the brewers," says New Belgium spokesman Bryan Simpson.
The first Hop Kitchen beer is Hoppy Bock Lager; it will be made with Hallertauer, Perle and Fuggle hops and appear this spring. The German-style beer will also be brewed with rye and "offer a medium body and slightly sweet malt character," the label says.
The next beer will be an ale made with Aramis, a spicy, citrusy hops variety grown in the Alsace region of France. After that, New Belgium will make an IPA using hops varieties grown in Oregon and certified by Salmon-Safe, a nonprofit that works with farmers on practices that help keep the state's salmon population healthy.
The last Hop Kitchen beer will be made from "old-school, throwback" hops varieties that were more popular in the 1980s and '90s than they are today, Simpson says.
Simpson didn't want to divulge the names of these beers until their labels are approved by the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.
New Belgium brews several seasonal beers each year, but its only other series is Lips of Faith, which consists primarily of sour and wild ales and beers that have been aged in barrels or brewed with unusual ingredients; they are also sold in bombers and on draft.
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