From the Beer Writer: Are you ready for some baseball? I sure am. Come this time of year, I start itching for a return to the sun-soaked, fresh-mowed green expanses of Petco Park. Enough to gas up my auto and drive all the way to Arizona for some preseason Cactus League action. There is something magical about America’s pastime, and I am (Randy) jonesing for it, big time (thanks in part to those new brown jerseys… thank you, Padres!). Today, San Diegans suffering this seasonal itch can get an early scratch care of Bitter Brothers Brewing, when the Bay Ho brewery has former Friars closer Heath Bell over to its tasting room to debut a beer he helped conceive. That draft pick, The Closer Tropical IPA, is a well-described, 6.5% alcohol-by-volume (ABV), aptly San Diego-style IPA with plenty of island-fruit appeal on the nose and taste buds. Bell will arrive to today’s event around 4 p.m., and Mastiff Sausage Company will be on-hand serving up hot dogs. The beer will be available on-tap and in four-packs. Included in the cost of the latter is a limited-edition glass, and sales will be capped at one four-pack per customer.
From the Brewer: “Our contract designer, Kory Maine, helped redesign the cans for Heath Bell’s company, Seven Cold Brew. Kory was in the brewery and we were chatting about the Bitter Brothers can design, when he said he had developed Heath’s brand. I asked if Kory thought Heath would want to do a beer with us. About a week later, we had a meeting with Heath and we came up with the idea it should be an IPA first, keeping it light, clean, and around 6% ABV. Everybody had ideas. We went back and forth, then settled on this IPA recipe. The beer has big, tropical notes of papaya, guava, and pineapple. It also has citrus, grapefruit, and mango notes from the hops. The Closer is an easy-to-drink IPA with a light body and dry finish, and has a slight bitterness that hangs on. The Kveik Hornindal was a wonderful yeast strain because of its tropical notes that play well with the Citra and Mosaic hops.”—Tyler Tucker, Head Brewer, Bitter Brothers Brewing