From New Belgium:
Get ready: an exciting new offering that’ll change the way you think about hoppy beers is coming your way. The brewers at New Belgium have created a new style of IPA: The Hemperor HPA. With the popularity of hoppy beers, our brewers are always on the lookout for different hop varieties and the complexities and flavors new strains can bring. That’s where hemp comes into the picture. Without getting too nerdy, we found a unique way to recreate hemp terpene flavors in a beer, which complement the inclusion of hop flavors and hemp hearts (seeds) in a brand new, delicious way—not to mention this beer is extremely dank! The flavors and aromas are so unique that it’s a style unto itself, hence HPA®.
As Colorado brewers we have long pondered the possibilities of blending hops with hemp. We expected the two elements would work well together so we set about researching the potential.
As research evolved, it quickly became apparent that the Federal government would not allow us to brew with whole hemp flower because parts of the hemp plant (which contains little to no THC) is still classified as a Schedule 1 drug. To be clear, there is no THC or CBD in this beer.
The federal government said we could still use hemp hearts (which are the meat of the hemp seed minus its shell) but we needed to find a workaround if we wanted those floral hemp terpenes – the key flavor attributes of the hemp plant that deliver the citrus, piney and dank flavors you’re smelling now.
Our next step was to identify those hemp terpenes and then find natural plant materials that would best emulate them.
That recipe is the secret sauce, so without getting too specific, we can tell you that we looked at things like orange peel, grapefruit and pine sap as examples. We feel our brewers nailed it, as you can tell by what’s in the glass in front of you.
We've picked a special day and time to tap this truly one of a kind IPA. See you at 4:20pm on 4/20!