S:t Eriks & Epic Devastation NZ DIPA

First there was Mayhem and then came Armageddon. Now we’re making Devastation.

They have hopped it and hopped it, and hopped it some more. The result is a big, complex, hoppy aroma with loads of papaya, mango, ripe strawberry notes. A distinct high and multi-layered citrus fruit peel bitterness rendering it a balanced elegance. It’s an alluring and deceivingly easy to drink 9% NZ DIPA.

The story begins long before either of them started brewing professionally. Jessica Heidrich and Luke Nicholas met 2006 in Seattle, surprise, surprise, in a brewery. They were both invited to judge in the World Beer Cup. A short while after WBC Jessica went to New Zeeland and judged in the New Zeeland International Beer Awards. Luke had by then started Epic Brewing Co and launched his first beer, Epic Pale Ale, an ale that in the same year was awarded the title Supreme Champion Beer. They have ever since talked about brewing something together, and as Luke finally came to visit Sweden and Stockholm Beer & Whisky Festival, they were able to get it together.

That it should be something with lots of hops in it never needed to be discussed. Jessica is a ”hop hearted woman” and Luke known as a bit of a ”hop zombie”, so a DIPA sort of felt quite natural. Even though they both are very passionate about hops, what they love about it is the flavours and aromas so the beer was designed to showcase that and not be overpowering bitter. Even big beers deserves balance. Since DIPA is a US beer style it has to have some US hops in it, but with a lot of New Zeeland hops to honour the Kiwi part of the collaboration.

Naming a beer is like finding the right name for your child. You toy around with a lot of names in the beginning until you suddenly find the right one. Since they come from opposite parts of the globe one of the suggestions that came up were ”Hemispheres”, but it held too much resemblance of Sierra Nevadas green hopped beers. ”Opposite Attracts”, referring to brewer/brewster, malt/hops, South Pole/North Pole. That train of thoughts almost rendered the beer the name ”Pole Dancer”…

When the name Devastation came up everything made perfect sence, though during brewing it almost got renamed Disaster. They maxed out the amount of malt in the mashtun and put in more hops in the kettle and fermenter than any other beer ever produced in the brewery before, which made filters and pumps choke, but they didn’t give up. As intended, the result is a bigger challenge to your olfactorial system than devastation of your esophagus.

Luke and Jessica at work. Photo: Magnus Björnstjerna

STIL DIPA | FÄRG Bärnsten |RÅVAROR Pilsner- samt ljus och mörk karamellmalt – Humle: Motueka, Riwaka, Amarillo, Galaxy, Centennial, Citra, Nelson Sauvin, Simcoe, NZ Cascade | ALKOHOLHALT 9,0 % | SÄSONG TSE Systembolaget 1 november 2013 | (flaska 33 cl)

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