There are many beer styles. So many that you would have to drink a different beer daily for the rest of your life to try them all. Some beers are robust and heavy; others are light and crisp. Some beers are creamy, and others are utterly refreshing.
There’s a beer style trending right now, and that’s the Hazy IPA. Also known as New England IPA, this exciting beer category is growing in popularity, and it’s easy to see why: the beer is fruity, refreshing and juicy. Even non-beer drinkers love the Hazy IPAs. Let’s talk about this exciting beer style.
What Are IPAs Anyway?
IPAs originated in England in the late 1700s. Beer producers made hoppy beer that would withstand the long journey to the country’s colony in India. IPA means India Pale Ale.
Still, modern IPAs are something else entirely. The craft beer revolution of the late 1900s brought the historical beer style back to life as brewers experimented with making bigger, hoppier, bolder beers. Hops add bitterness and enticing aromas to beer, and IPAs are the hoppiest beers out there. Expect assertive bitterness in every sip and the most exotic flavors of resin, herbs and tropical fruit.
The Hazy IPA Trend
The Hazy IPA, also known as New England IPA and NEIPA, is a relatively recent invention. It was created in New England in the early 2000s. The beer style immediately became trendy for being not bitter at all, but juicy and fruity. The beer is also cloudy, and it’s packed with hop aromas.
The secret behind this beer style is the dry-hopping technique, in which the beer is infused with dry hops in a hop back chamber during fermentation; regular beers are hopped before fermentation. Hazy IPAs also feature New World hops, which are more fruit-forward and expressive.
How to Pair Hazy IPAs with Food
The Hazy IPA is the most approachable beer style worldwide, thanks to its sweet nose and slight bitterness. What tastes like a combination of light beer and juice doesn’t contain fruit at all — it’s all in the hops.
Hazy IPAs are delicious on their own, but they’re good partners for pastries and mildly sweet desserts, including meringues, macarons and fruit tarts. Of course, the beer style is also compatible with savory food, especially white meat and creamy sauces. Don’t be fooled by the beer’s sweet nose, though; the style is as dry as any beer.
Other Beers to Try
If you like Hazy IPAs, there are other beer styles with similar flavor profiles. Many modern American IPAs are fruity and easy to drink. Specialty fruit beer, which includes juice, is similar to NEIPAs. Even a few cream ales and American pale ales have a fruity character most people will find enjoyable.
If you’re into craft beer, particularly IPAs, you must try a Hazy IPA. And if you’re not into beer at all, this is the beer style for you. Hazy IPAs are here to stay, and they’re only getting more sophisticated.