Man, we love going to Hogtown. I mean, we L-O-V-E going to Hogtown! We were excited, yet again to have participated in the 2018 Hogtown Craft Beer Festival which took place on April 21st. It's one of the beer festivals that we hope to be personally attending every year, even after we're open and wildly successful! What a beautiful time of year in Florida and what a great group of beer lovers!
When deciding on what to make for this year's festival, we wanted to make something that was not too heavy but still had character. For our first option, we selected Rye Not a simple, but solid Rye Pale Ale. It clocked in at a respectable 7% ABV with a malty front and that distinctive Rye spice at the back. It was then balanced with the fruity esters of the English yeast and a strong (but not over-powering) 50 IBU.
Our second selection was a special offering. Liz recently earned her "Pink Boots" brewing her first beer (from recipe to final product) with a beer called "Un Poco de Piña" - A Piña Colada Cream Ale. Though she didn't win the competition, the beer was well-received by the crowd so we decided to make a few adjustments and give it another go and bring it to Hogtown! Matt took the reins on the brewing this time (he IS the pro, after all) and the result was a light-bodied fruity concoction, flavored with the essence of the Caribbean! It was infused with hints of roasted coconut and pineapple (no extracts here!). In secondary fermentation, we added additional coconut along with Rum soaked oak chips to provide added complexity to the flavor profile.
Though both beers were well-received at Hogtown, we did not expect the wildly vocal enthusiasm we got for "Un Poco". Several commenters said that it should be one of our flagship beers, others who claimed to be "anti-fruity" were surprised at just how much they liked it! We recognized several familiar faces coming back for 2nd helpings (and even a 3rd). All-in-all we were all (Liz especially) delightfully surprised at the positive response to our beers (and the empty kegs to prove it)!
Once again, thank you Hogtown, for a fantastic festival - we'll see you next year!