Samuel Adams is ready to unveil the results of "Project Lupulus," a four-year experiment the Boston brewers undertook to entirely reimagine one of their most popular flagship beers.
Beginning in early 2017, you'll notice new packaging for the popular Rebel IPA, their signature beer in the category first launched in 2014. Little did anyone know, though, that even before that, in 2013, the brewery started collaborating with hop breeders in Yakima, WA – the epicenter of U.S. hop growing – to cultivate a proprietary hop variety exclusive to Sam Adams called HBC 566.
This combined with an experimental hop variety for bittering, HBC 682, the addition of juicier hop varieties Mosaic, Simcoe and Cascade, and an altering of the malt bill have produced a "Rebel Reborn," in their parlance, with "more intense juicy, tropical and citrus flavor supported by a leaner body and a crisp, clean finish to optimize the hop character."
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“This is the first time we’ve significantly changed the recipe of a flagship beer,” said founder Jim Koch. “Like with the original Rebel IPA recipe, this release isn’t a palate-scorching hop-bomb. Our goal was to showcase the intricate aromas and flavors of hops, especially with new, experimental hop varieties HBC 566 and HBC 682."
The new Rebel IPA will roll out on draft and in six-packs of bottles while its juice-bomb brother, Rebel Juiced, will start appearing in cans as part of the Pack of Rebels variety pack.
"Not that long ago, it was a challenge just to find quality, flavorful hops and now, we’re developing our own proprietary hop with unparalleled lemony-lime, orange and eucalyptus notes," Koch continued. "It’s wild to think how far the brewing industry has come and that today, a beer can evolve.”
In case you're wondering, "Lupulus" is a reference to the scientific name of a hop, Humulus lupulus, inside of which is a special lupulin gland that provides the source of flavor, bitterness and aroma in hops.
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