SweetWater Brewing Company - H.A.Z.Y. Double IPA
Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs):47
Serving Temperature:45-50° F
Suggested Glassware:IPA Glass or Tall Tulip
Malts:2 Row, Pilsner, Wheat, Oats
Hops:Strata, El Dorado, Sultana
Inspired by their H.A.Z.Y. IPA, SweetWater decided to craft an imperialized version that was even juicier and more intense than the original. Their H.A.Z.Y. Double IPA looks very much like the original, pouring a well-hazed golden orange hue with a cap of off-white foam. On the nose: this is one extremely juicy brew, as we expect for a hazy New England-style IPA that’s been put on steroids. Look for a bold fruit cocktail character evoking prominent pineapple, passion fruit, mango, strawberry, orange, and grapefruit notes, augmented by hints of melon and stone fruits, and some resinous, pine-like tones. It's a riot of fruity flavors on the palate, too, with some adjacent resinous and herbal qualities with hints of exotic spices. We felt the malt backbone was straightforward but very robustly realized and very smooth, providing the necessary heft to support the explosive hops and big 8.5% ABV. Despite being a double IPA, hop bitterness remains moderate at just 47 IBUs, holding to the New England-style theme of subdued bitterness with maximum juicy hop flavor. For pairing options with hazy IPAs, we steer towards dishes with a fruity element, and given this brew’s big ABV, some fat and salt would work too. Citrus marinated carne asada tacos sound great to us, as does roasted pork with an apricot glaze. Cheers!
SweetWater founders Freddy Bensch and Kevin McNerney met as roommates at the University of Colorado, Boulder. They quickly realized that they had more of an affinity for beer than books, and began dreaming of starting a microbrewery. After graduating, they headed off to California to attend brewing school at UC Davis, after which the two friends honed their craft by working for a number of breweries on the West Coast. In 1996, Freddy visited Atlanta and decided that the town was in dire need of a quality microbrewery. With the help of family and friends, Freddy and Kevin amassed enough capital to get their dream off the ground.
SweetWater Brewing Company (named after a local creek on which Freddy liked to kayak) opened for business in 1997, and after driving all over the city in an old van, Freddy and Kevin managed to line up a few bars interested in their new West Coast style beers. Their beers were a hit, and in the 1998 World Beer Cup, SweetWater walked away with the second highest number of medals. Then in 2002, they were named Small Brewery of the Year at the Great American Beer Festival.
After several years of strong growth, the brewery was relocated in 2004 from its original location on Atlanta’s west side to a larger facility near Ansley Park in mid-town Atlanta. But, within just a few short years demand increased to the point that the brewhouse was in near continuous operation – 24 hrs a day, 365 days a year – necessitating a major expansion in 2012. The new features included Atlanta’s largest privately owned solar array, capable of generating 157 KwH of clean electricity, as well as top-of-the-line computerized brewing equipment that allows SweetWater to slow down the human side of the brewing process to increase quality control, while simultaneously increasing their overall output. In 2016, SweetWater launched their "Woodlands Project" in an adjacent building, which is focused on their barrel-aging program and small batches of sour, funky, and experimental beers. For more information about the brewery and their taproom, visit them at www.sweetwaterbrew.com.
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