From the Beer Writer: In its simplest form, beer can serve as a delicious form of refreshment able to put a positive spin on one’s mood. Then there are those rare times when a beer can serve as a tribute to a special person. Such is the case with Himmelbrew, an India pale ale (IPA) created in memory of Joey Himmelberg, the late friend of Gina Champion-Cain, the CEO of The Patio Group. Before his unexpected passing, Himmelberg enjoyed surfing at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas. So, when The Patio Group opened a new restaurant in that coastal municipality, The Patio on 101, it sectioned off a bar, dubbing it “Himmelberg’s,” and called on downtown San Diego’s Mission Brewery to develop a signature beer that would only be available at the new venue. Designed to be “fruity,” it offers flavors akin to peach and orange followed by grapefruit-pith bitterness. A touch of caramel character takes it to old-school West Coast IPA territory, while a lighter body primes it for enjoyment under beachy sunshine (or moonlight) in tandem with cool breezes and the crashing of the waves that its namesake so adored.
From the Brewer:“For us, it was really exciting to collaborate with a restaurant group that I, personally, have been a fan of for quite some time. When Daymon Ast, our sales manager, introduced me to Billy Nordmeier, the Director of Hospitality, and the idea came to life, I was pretty excited because his idea and mine aligned with a hop-forward, super-fruity, drier IPA. We used a very clean malt bill with a large whirlpool and dry-hop consisting only of Mosaic and Citra hops, which happens to be my favorite hop combo. Both varieties are prized for their floral, fruity and very aromatic qualities. The souls of the hops really shine through, but it’s when we add them to the beer that also makes a big difference. The resulting beer is a 6.2% IPA that has notes of tropical fruit bursting from the glass, and it’s a beer that we are extremely proud of. The Himmelbrew is drinkable, very food-friendly and not drowning in alcohol. The hops shine through and work with the clean malt bill for a wonderful balance.”–Cody Morris, Head Brewer & Operations Manager, Mission Brewery