Sixpoint Party Hat Hazy IPA

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Red Hook, Brooklyn brewers Sixpoint have been around for about 16 years. They’ve put their brews in cans for about 10 years and started releasing all their ales raw and unfiltered about two years ago. Now they’re carving another notch in their accomplishment belt: releasing an IPA — a juicy, hazy, hoppy IPA called Party Hat — that rates a zero on the calculated IBU scale. What? An IPA with no bitterness? How? 

This seemingly magic feat is achieved through the simple manipulation of brewery science.  If a brewer adds hops during the boil (as most do) the heat releases alpha acids in the hops, which are what you taste when you note bitterness in beer. In the case of really hoppy beers (IPAs especially) the hops are added to the boil, and more are added at the end — a process called dry-hopping. This gives beer its hoppy aroma, those notes of citrus, pineapple, piney resin, and floral notes that you get from IPAs and their like. 

Since the brewing scientists over at Sixpoint decided to leave all hops out of the boil, no alpha acids were released. By only dry-hopping, ie adding a bunch (four pounds per barrel) of hops (Galaxy, Citra, and Mosaic) towards the end of the process, all the hop aroma and flavor (plus those hazy hop oils) fill the beer, leaving out all bitterness. It’s a juicy, aromatic brew with all of the nose and none of the heat. Like magic.

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