Olde Saratoga Brewing Company - Saratoga IPA
- ABV: 6.8%
- Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs): 60
- Serving Temperature: 45-50° F
- Suggested Glassware: Pint Glass or Mug
- Malts: 2-Row, Canada Munich, Wheat Malt, CaraMunich 40
- Hops: Warrior, Cascade, Fuggles
Saratoga's IPA pours a crystal clear golden copper color capped by plenty of foam that leaves some lacing as it drops. Look for some soft floral and citrus Cascade hop aromas, bolstered by a pleasant, almost vegetal, woody-earthy character that is classic Fuggles. Notes of caramelized malts with hints of toffee provide an underpinning. On the palate, we found the big 60 IBUs were not shy, but were still balanced well by the beer's malty backbone. The choice to use Munich malt (common in bocks, Vienna lagers, märzens, etc.) instead of more IPA-traditional caramel or crystal malts lends a unique, smooth and richly malty character that we enjoyed quite a bit. The blend of Cascade and Fuggles that Saratoga dry-hops this brew with is fun too, delivering a US-meets-England pairing of citric acidity along with woody, earthy, and spicy notes. Try pairing this IPA with Asiago-encrusted chicken. Cheers!
The Olde Saratoga Brewing Company is a fixture within the craft brewing industry in New York. Founded in 1997, the brewery is responsible for producing many well known beers found along the East Coast and elsewhere. In addition to their own Saratoga-branded year-round and seasonal beers, Olde Saratoga serves as the brewing partner for a number of other beer brands. Owned now by California's Mendocino Brewing Company, which brought the brewery into their fold in order to produce fresh Mendocino beer for the East Coast, Olde Saratoga produces about two dozen total beers both year-round and seasonally.
To those outside the brewing industry, the idea of a brewing company contracting with another brewery to produce their beer may seem strange, but it's a common practice at all levels of the brewing industry, from big brands to small microbrews, and it's been essential to the growth of the craft beer movement. Many great brewers don't have the capital resources to build their own brewery, so partnering with an existing brewery that can accurately brew your recipes and bottle it up for you as you grow your brand is critical. In a variation on the theme, some brewers will rent time on a brewery’s equipment. In other cases, a brewery may run out of capacity and turn to another brewery for help meeting their demand. Olde Saratoga’s brewing know-how has made them one of the go-to breweries for such services, partnering with a number of other beer companies over the years including such respected brands as Southampton Publick House and Shmaltz (He'Brew).
For more information on the brewery, their tasting room (where you can fill a growler with tasty beer to take home), and brewery tours, visit them at www.oldesaratogabrew.com or call 518-581-0492.
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