Our infatuation with the strong and hoppy India Pale Ales shows no sign of abating. It’s no wonder then, why IPA fanatics, led by Berkeley’s Ashley Routson (aka The Beer Wench), organized the first IPA Day back in 2011. This year’s celebration takes place on Thursday, August 7.
You might expect that after 15 years of craft breweries combining hops and malt into what are now several thousand IPAs we would have reached the end of what’s possible with the style. But hops growers continue to resurrect neglected varietals while also breeding new ones. Many of these newer hops, such as Washington state’s Mosaic and Azacca and New Zealand’s Motueka and Riwaka, provide craft brewers with an expanding IPA palette to work with, and one of the more luscious examples of using only new hop varieties in a double-IPA is Stone Brewery’s aptly named Unapologetic IPA.
The biggest IPA Day celebration in SF will be at 21st Amendment. 21A’s Head Brewer Zambo explained what festivities they have planned for the big day, “IPAs are a testament to what the American Craft Beer industry has done with foreign-born styles. And our guests are big-time hopheads! We'll be serving up at least five different American IPAs, including a classic American IPA or two, a Red IPA or India Red Ale, the well-loved Back in Black, our Black IPA, and Hop Crisis, an oak-aged Imperial IPA. And now that I think of it, let’s throw a cask IPA in there as well!" Happy hour is from 2:30-5:30 and includes $2 off all house brews.
Wherever you are on August 7, remember to share your photos, videos, blog posts, tasting notes, recipes, and thoughts by tagging them #IPAday.