For 35 consecutive years, Redhook Brewery has released Winterhook as its winter seasonal beer release. For the 2019 edition, the brewers at Redhook have changed the recipe from last year’s Winterhook Hoppy Dark Lager to the newly released Winterhook Hoppy Brown Ale.
Nick Crandall, Redhook’s Head Brewer went back to a classic beer style for his inspiration for this year’s Winterhook. Brewed since 1984, this year’s Winterhook is a classic American Brown Ale with exciting new hop varietals that provide a malt-forward body and a crisp, smooth finish.
“Brown Ales were more ubiquitous in the ‘90s when almost every brewery had one on tap,” said Crandall, in a prepared statement. “We wanted to revisit this classic style and create an American brown ale for the 2019 beer fan.”
Crandall used Alchemy, Mosaic, and Sabro hops and a malt bill of 2-Row, Caramel 40, Caramel 80, Chocolate, and Midnight Wheat. The Sabro hops over a complex flavor that combines tangerine citrus and coconut aromas with earthy woodsy notes. The hop was paired with a rich malty brown ale backdrop that finishes crisp, dry, and not too sweet. The result is a 6% ABV and 50 IBU brown ale.
A version of the beer was first tapped at Redhook Brewlab in Capitol Hill as Boylston Brown, named after the side street that Redhook uses to load pallets of beer. This iteration of Winterhook embodies the American Brown Ale as it has moderate hop bite balanced by rich maltiness and roastiness.
For those attending the Washington’s Winter Beer Festival at Hangar 30 in Magnuson Park in Seattle on Friday and Saturday, December 6 and 7, 2019, Winterhook will be one of the beers pouring.
Winterhook is back for its 35th year and is currently available through December in six-packs of 12-ounce bottles, as well as on draft at Redhook’s Brewlab and other establishments. To find Winterhook near you use the Redhook’s Beer-Finder.
D.J. is a Portland, Oregon based writer that spent his formative years in the Midwest. With over 25 years under his belt of drinking beer at festivals across America and the world, he has developed a strong appreciation and understanding of craft beer and the industry that surrounds it. He can be found in any of the great breweries or beer bars that make Portland the best beer city in the world. His writing can also be found in the archives of Northwest Brewing News and can be followed on Twitter and Instagram at @hopapalooza.