ESCONDIDO, CA—At Stone Brewing Co., new beer ideas from way-out-there to downright obscure are debated daily. When it comes to brewing a beer in celebration of Stone’s anniversary, it’s no-holds-barred for the brewing team. Case in point: Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA. Gott-er-dam-er, what?! (The phonetic spelling doesn’t help much on the pronunciation; check out Brewmaster Mitch Steele attempting to pronounce it by watching the video.) Starting today, the anniversary beer will be available in bottles and/or on draft at select retailers, restaurants and bars across the U.S.
Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA is a double IPA, brewed with malts and hops traditionally used in German pilsners. Steele has always been a fan of German beers, and proposed a West Coast-style double/triple IPA with German hop and malt characteristics for this year’s Stone Anniversary Ale. A departure from the citrusy American and fruity New Zealand hops the team primarily brewed with of late, the German hop varieties bring intensely hoppy character and floral, stone fruit, herbal, spicy, peppery flavors to the beer. Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA is 9.5 percent alcohol-by-volume (ABV) and comes in at 102 international bittering units (IBUs). The beer pours a deep gold, and has a uniquely strong flavor profile that is balanced, clean and intensely bitter. It should be consumed before the “Enjoy By” date on the bottle to maximize hop aromas and flavors, as it’s quite hard to say how this will cellar if laid down for future consumption.
So, what does Götterdämmerung mean? Occasionally referred to as a disastrous conclusion of events, the name was chosen because Stone wanted to take West Coast IPA sensibilities and combine them with German ingredients. By unceremoniously mashing together one of the most traditional beer styles with one of the newest, Stone created a beer that well, may be the end (or perhaps the extension) of everything we thought we knew when it came to the range of uses for German hop varieties.
Of course, no anniversary is complete without a stupendous display of celebration. On August 16 and 17, Stone will infiltrate the California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) campus in North County San Diego to bring fans an epic array of craft beers, all in the name of celebration and charity. One hundred percent of the profits from the Stone 17th Anniversary Celebration & Invitational Beer Festival will be donated to local charities, including Boys & Girls Club of San Marcos, Fight ALD, Palomar Family YMCA and Surfrider Foundation. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit stonebrewing.com/anniv.
Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA Quick Facts
Name: Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA
Stats: 9.5% ABV, 102 IBUs
Availability: Limited 22-ounce bottles and draft, beginning August 12
Hops bill: Magnum, Herkules, Merkur, Opal, Emerald (aka Smaragd), Strisselspalt, German Hersbrucker, Sterling
Distribution: AK, AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, and WA
Tasting notes, provided by Stone Brewmaster Mitch Steele
Appearance: Pours deep gold and brilliantly crystal clear with an off-white colored head.
Aroma: Focused on hoppy, with herbal and stone fruit hop aromatics.
Taste: European hops—herbal, floral, spicy, peppery and resiny, balanced by very clean, intensely bitter, beautiful subtle malt flavors, and just a hint of alcohol.
Palate: Crisp and bitter. A very refreshing beer; well suited for the summer!
Overall: A very fun beer for us to brew. Through a series of intense dry-hopping trials that we have been running over the past couple of years, we found several newer German hop varieties that we thought were unique and different from the citrusy American hops and fruity New Zealand hops that we have been using so much of this year. An interesting twist on a Double IPA (a German IPA, perhaps?), brewed with malts and hops traditionally used to brew German lagers and European pilsners. Some of the hops we included in this recipe include Strisselspalt, which has long been one of my favorite noble hops, with a delicate floral character and hints of citrus; Sterling, a U.S.-bred hop with Saaz heritage, and a hop we haven’t used much before, but we just love the intense resiny and spicy pure hop flavor; Herkules, a newer high-alpha German hop variety with intense stone fruit and tropical fruit characteristics; and Hersbrucker, a classic German aroma hop with intense floral and stone fruit flavors.
Suggested food pairings, provided by “Dr.” Bill Sysak
Appetizers: Honey-ginger chicken skewers, crab cakes, grilled peaches with blue cheese, Marcona almonds
Salads: Citrus with goat cheese, summer fruit, Thai seafood, Waldorf
Entrees: Rotisserie chicken, Cajun shrimp and grits, tofu stir fry, cedar plank salmon
Cheeses: Grana Padrano, Fiscalini Bandage Wrapped Cheddar, Green Mountain Blue Cheese, Point Reyes Blue
Desserts: Peach cobbler, carrot cake, rhubarb pie, lemon squares
Cigars: Drew Estate Herrera Esteli, Montecristo Platinum Churchill, My Father Flor de las Antillas Toro, Illusione Epernay Le Martin