Wednesday, April 23, 2014

We’ve been getting a lot of inquiries as to why the color of our Fistful of Hops cans keep changing… The answer is simple: Because the seasons change.

The essence of Sun King is seasonality and in order to keep our IPA fresh and interesting, we created Fistful of Hops to be a ROTATING SEAONAL IPA. The malt base of Fistful stays the same year round and is designed to let the hop flavor and character shine through. Every three months we switch things up and showcase new hop varieties and when that happens we rotate to a new color to denote the change. We launched with Red in the Fall, followed by Blue during Winter, now Green for Spring and in July we will release the Orange for Summer before starting the cycle all over again!

A lot of people don’t realize, but one of the biggest issues with hops is supply. In order to make any particular beer, you obviously have to have a consistent supply of the necessary raw ingredients. When Dave and I were conceptualizing Sun King back in 2007 there was a series of events (weather issues and agricultural difficulties, as well as a warehouse fire in the Northwest that destroyed a LOT of the world’s hop supply) that led to a serious shortage in the world’s hop supply. We were fortunate enough to have a great relationship with Brewers Supply Group and they allowed us to secure hop contracts for our fledgling idea which at the time was going for a brew pub that would produce 1,000 barrels of beer a year. In 2010, Sun King produced 5,000 barrels of beer and we’ve been growing ever since we opened to the point where we produced 21,000 barrels of beer in 2013!

Because of the growth in the craft beer industry, hops continue to be in short supply. It’s not that there aren’t hops out there, but the specific varieties of American hops that are essential to making a really tasty American style IPA are still really hard to come by. People constantly tell us that we should make Grapefruit Jungle all year, but the truth is we simply can’t. We literally allocate every ounce of the hops we need to craft GFJ into making as much of it as we possibly can once a year. Every year we beg, borrow or steal more of the specific varieties and make even more GFJ and every year it sells out just as fast every time!

With all this in mind, in order to offer a year round IPA we came up with Fistful of Hops, our Seasonal Rotating IPA. Fistful of Hops rings in at 6.5% ABV and 70 IBUs bringing you a big hop punch that will continue to change with the seasons.

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