So, when the brothers heard about a new brewing process involving “wet hops,” their interested was instantly peaked.
“It was something that only a couple breweries in California were trying at that time,” said Two Brothers co-founder, Jason Ebel. “But it was something we definitely knew we wanted to try.” They contacted their friends at Puterbaugh Farms and set up a process to pick fresh hops straight from the vine and immediately ship them overnight to the brewery. The brewing team then added those hopes, at 6-times the normal amount, into the whirlpool first thing the next morning. This sped-up process of brewing with a massive amount of freshly picked or wet hops created a distinct flavor profile, with big, bold hop notes coming to the forefront.
And with that, Heavy Handed Wet-Hopped IPA was born. That was in 2001. Since then, Two Brothers has selected hops during every hop harvest (late August, early September) when the hops are fully matured and have reached peak ripeness. These hops are brought back to the brewery and instantly added to the brewing process to create the unique wet hop character.
“Nowadays, wet-hopped IPAs are fairly common,” said Ebel. “We thought we could use our experience and love of innovation to create the first Midwest-version of that beer. It was a huge hit with our fans and we’ve been making it ever since.”
Over the years, Two Brothers has used a number of different hops in Heavy Handed. This year will feature Chinook hops from Hop Head Farms in Michigan. The wet Chinook hops will produce spicy and piney characteristics, with notes of grapefruit and a noticeable bitter finish.
Available in 16-oz can 4-packs and on draft, Heavy Handed will be available throughout all Two Brothers distribution areas in the coming weeks.
About Two Brothers Brewing Company
Two Brothers Brewing Company was founded by Jim and Jason Ebel in late 1996. What started out as a two-man passion project, Two Brothers has grown into a lifestyle brand, including award-winning craft beer, three artisan restaurants, specialty-grade coffee, a distribution company and a line of hand-crafted spirits. With an unrelenting passion for producing high-quality, well-balanced beers that push the boundaries of flavor, Two Brothers remains 100% family owned and staunchly independent.
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