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Beer School

Lesson 1: Ah, Two Brut, eh?

A relative newcomer to the beer scene, the Brut IPA is one of the biggest beer trends of 2018. But, what does it mean to be a Brut?

Borrowing its name from the wine world, the term “brut” describes a style of beer that is both extremely dry and highly carbonated. Unofficial style guidelines suggest that it should also be pale in colour and present clear hop aromas.

So, what’s the Brut secret? According to San Francisco’s Kim Sturdavant, it’s all in the enzyme. This special enzyme, called amyloglucosidase, works to break down otherwise unfermentable starches into fermentable sugars. In brewing triple IPAs or imperial stouts, it is used to achieve greater attenuation, allowing the brightness of the hops to shine through heavy malts.

Last year Sturdavant, who is credited with the creation of the Brut IPA, decided to experiment by using the amylo enzyme to brew a single IPA with Nelson Sauvin hops. The result was the birth of the first Brut beer, a fruit-forward bone dry IPA with champagne-like carbonation.

While the beer world is changing more quickly than ever before, it’s hard to predict whether the Brut IPA is a passing trend or if it will become an official style that’s here to stay – that said, it’s worth trying a pint or two either way!

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