In the brewing industry, collaborations are commonplace, representing great opportunities for two breweries to get together and craft a recipe that speaks to both of their individual brewing styles. However, a recent collaboration between Perennial Artisan Ales of St. Louis and Resident Culture Brewing of Charlotte, North Carolina, was anything but common.
Spurred by an invite to the 2019 Honey Beer Summit in St. Louis and an assist from the National Honey Board (NHB), this collaboration utilized honey from each brewery’s home state as part of a double dry-hopped honey IPA collaboration released during National Honey Month.
For craft beer drinkers, honey’s use in an IPA may seem counter-intuitive, as this style of beer is known for its bitter and juicy hop flavors. However, honey’s role in brewing extends far beyond sweetening due to its fermentability. When honey is added prior to fermentation, almost all of the sugars in honey will ferment out, imparting no sweetness but instead a depth of flavor and floral aromatics.
In an IPA, this depth of flavor smooths out the rough edges of the hops and elevates the floral and fruity notes. In addition, honey’s usage in beer also creates a more crisp, refreshing beer.
For the Perennial Artisan Ales and Resident Culture Brewing collaboration, the team sourced North Carolina sourwood honey and Missouri wildflower honey to represent each brewery’s home state. The two honeys had completely unique but complementing flavor profiles. The Missouri wildflower honey carried significant aromatics that came through in the final beer, and the sourwood honey added an earthiness and complexity to the flavor of the beer.
The beer, named Honeydewdz, was brewed the day after the 2019 Honey Beer Summit in St. Louis and the NHB was on hand for the brew day (we even got our hands “sticky” and helped add the honey into the whirlpool!). Thank you to Chris Kinast of Perennial Artisan Ales and Chis Tropeano of Resident Culture Brewing for showing us the ropes of our very first brew day!
It was a great day and we’re proud to have worked with these two great breweries on a collaboration beer to celebrate National Honey Month. If you’re in St. Louis, the beer is available at Perennial Artisan Ales either on draft or in to-go cans.