From the Beer Writer: When beer fans hear the name Melvin Brewing, they immediately think of extremely hoppy IPAs. It’s what the Wyoming-based company built its reputation on. It’s also why Bobby Oliver, head brewer at Melvin’s East Village brewpub, has free reign to explore non-hoppy styles. Variety is the spice of life and what brewpubs are all about. Recently, Oliver got about as far removed as one can get from a hop-boosted IPA, brewing a low-alcohol Belgian-style table beer. On top of that, he utilized two obscure ingredients seldom seen in beer: ohba leaves (AKA: shiso, Japan’s popular minty garnish) and Buddha’s hand, an exotic member of the citrus family with a soft, lemony flavor. These add-ons further brighten an already light, spritzy beer that goes down easy pint after pint, especially in warm weather.
From the Brewer: “I’ve really been digging the Buddha Mountain. It’s a collaboration we did with Beshock Ramen down the street. It’s a Belgian table beer with Japanese ohba leaves and Buddha’s hand. It’s 4% alcohol-by-volume and perfect for summer. The Buddha’s hand adds a nice, citrusy kick, and the ohba leaves adds a nice level of complexity to such a simple style. The collaboration came about because we’re pretty much neighbors and we want to attract people to the businesses in the East Village. We made the beer for the sake festival that Beshock is hosting at Quartyard at the end of the month. We were shooting for a nice, sessionable beer for people to drink when they’re not drinking sake in the heat of September; something simple but made into something different and fun. I feel like we nailed it.”—Bobby Oliver, Head Brewer, Melvin Brewing San Diego