It’s been nearly a decade since the first batch of Solis IPA was brewed by Mike Hess Brewing (MHB), known then as Hess Brewing, in Miramar. That beer was a collaboration with this magazine, with the original full title Solis Occasus (meaning “sunset” in Latin) referencing the West Coast. Solis #1 was the first MHB beer sold outside the tasting room, debuting at the West Coaster launch party held at The South Park Abbey in early 2011.
Since then, by design, each batch has varied slightly in hop and grain content, with several iterations winning awards at large competitions. Along the way, MHB has used the changing nature of the beer to invite input from collaborators. Recognizing that the landmark batch was coming up, Scot Blair of Hamilton’s Tavern and South Park Brewing reached out to MHB to help with Solis #100.
The following are the beer specifications. Malts: 2-row barley, Simpsons Golden Promise, and a splash of Simpsons Crystal Light; kettle hops: Columbus, Cascade, and Centennial; whirlpool hops: Chinook and Citra; hopback: Centennial whole cone; dry hops: Chinook and Citra. ABV: 7.5% with 65 IBUs.
The size of the batches has significantly increased over the years, from Miramar’s 1.6-barrel system to North Park’s 30-barrel setup. In total, 90 barrels were brewed over the course of two days in late September; that output was divided betweens cans and kegs in early October.
Tomorrow, the local MHB tasting rooms (North Park headquarters, Ocean Beach, Imperial Beach, and Miramar) will tap Solis #100, with specialty glassware available, and t-shirts for sale in North Park.
Next week, on October 18, Hamilton’s in South Park hosts a MHB night, including a firkin of Solis #100 with Columbus dry hopping. Beers on tap will include Solis #100, Claritas Kölsch, OktoberHess, Hop Cloud Hazy IPA, Umbrix Rye Imperial Stout with cherry and coconut, and Into the Sunset Blood Orange IPA.