Hazy Days

  • May 15th, 2020
  • By Jeremy Moore

The Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) describes a New England IPA as “an American IPA with intense fruit flavours and aromas, a soft body, and smooth mouthfeel, and often opaque with substantial haze. Less perceived bitterness than traditional IPAs but always massively hop forward. This emphasis on late hopping, especially dry hopping, with hops with tropical fruit qualities lends the specific ‘juicy’ character for which this style is known.”

Coming in at 6% ABV and 35 IBU, Cowbell’s Hazy Days was designed both to live up to its name, and this definition. The idea was to create a beer with an opaque haze and full body, but lacking any floating particulates - yeast, hop matter, or otherwise. It has a metric ton of fruity hop character, but is low in perceived bitterness, while still having some bite. We achieved this with three hop additions – first addition in the whirlpool, and the subsequent two being dry-hops. This is backed by a light, bready sweetness from the malted barley, oats and toasted wheat. There was to be no questioning as to whether this beer was still an IPA. We hope you enjoy drinking this beer as much as we enjoy making it!

WATER - At the Cowbell Farm, all of our beers are brewed with fresh water from an on-site well, passed through sophisticated carbon and UV filters to ensure the water is clean and pure. We keep the water as simple as possible, only making slight mineral adjustments in the mash to ensure a balanced finished beer.

MALTS – The base malt used is 2-row Canadian barley, a versatile malt with a neutral flavour. Flaked oats and toasted flaked wheat make up a large portion of the grain bill for this beer, both of which will add haze, body, and help with mouthfeel and head retention. The rest of the malt profile is split between Crystal Medium, which in this small amount adds a hint of colour, and Dextrin, which helps improve mouthfeel and head retention.

HOPS – El Dorado, known for tropical fruit flavours and stone fruit character; Mosaic, rich in mango, lemon, citrus, earthy pine, tropical fruit, herbal and stone fruit notes; Mandarina Bavaria, a complex hop, has a fruity and citrus-heavy profile. The sweet fruity character brings notes of gooseberry, strawberry, and blackcurrant. Citrus elements may be quite intense with strong lemon, pineapple, lime, and tangerine. Lastly, the Australian hop, Galaxy, has an amazing citrus, peach and passionfruit aroma, especially when used as a late addition, as is done with Hazy Days.

YEAST – Escarpment Labs California Foggy London yeast displays a balanced, fruity flavour profile, and accentuates malt and hop flavours. It is especially suited to production of fruity hop-forward Northeast style IPAs.