Adelbert’s Brewery - Scratchin’ Hippo

Adelbert’s Brewery - Scratchin’ Hippo

Beer Club featured in U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club


American Amber Ale


United States

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Adelbert’s Brewery - Scratchin’ Hippo

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  • Suggested Glassware:

    Pint Glass or Tulip
  • Malts:

    Pilsner, Munich, CaraMunich 1
  • Hops:

    Cascade, Centennial

Scratchin’ Hippo was originally brewed as a bière de garde, a French farmhouse ale style, and we featured that brew years ago in our Rare Beer Club. Adelbert’s has revised the recipe to go in the direction of a classic amber ale, and it has now become one of their core beers. Pouring a deep amber color with plenty of beige foam, it offers up a nice balance on the nose between malts and hops. Look for a caramelized and bready base character, decorated by flashes of dried fruits. A bright hoppy note runs atop it all, bringing some floral and citric character along with some earthiness. That balanced malty/hoppy interplay continues on the palate. There’s a rich, toasty breadiness here, augmented by caramel notes and a touch of residual sweetness. Those bright hops provide a satisfying counterpoint, bringing moderate bitterness along with a nice dose of citrus zest. For pairing options, the brewery recommends burgers and barbecue, along with feta and goat cheese, or banana bread pudding. Cheers!

Adelbert’s Brewery was founded in 2011, with the first beer flowing out in early 2012. The brewery itself was started by Scott Hovey, who was a longtime homebrewer prior to going pro, and is a graduate of the Master Brewers Association of the Americas’ Malting and Brewing Science Course. The brewery is named in tribute to his brother, George Adelbert Hovey (1953–2000). “Del,” as he was known, is commemorated with a different brief story about him attached to each of the brewery’s beers. As Scott puts the ethos, “[I’m] immortalizing my brother through my different beers.”

Many of Adelbert’s beers are Belgian-inspired, bottle-conditioned ales, and the brewery puts an extra emphasis on ingredient sourcing and process. The majority of their barley is floor-malted and sourced from the Czech Republic, from a malting house just outside of Prague that dates back to the 1300s. Their specialty malts are purchased from Belgium, and they employ the labor-intensive, decoction-mash technique for their beers. In addition to styles like IPA, porter, and stout, they produce an array of Belgian styles such as saison, witbier, dubbel, tripel, and quadrupel, as well as some sours and even a bière de champagne. Their taproom resides on premises at the brewery and features numerous taps, games, and a food truck known as The Hot Box Diner. For more info, give them a ring at 512-662-1462 or visit

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