Thursday, March 06, 2008

Changes at Live Oak Brewing

I just got off the phone with Chip at Live Oak Brewing, and I asked him about the impact that the current worldwide hop shortage is having on his company. He says they have enough hops to last through the year and into 2009, but the inability to get sufficient Cascade hops is causing them to downgrade their Liberation IPA from a regular brew to a seasonal, which ought to have Austin hop fans … um, crying in their beer.

And there's more bad news: their
Pale Ale (which I tried for only the first time last night on my first-ever visit to Bull McCabe's after the They Might Be Giants show at Stubb's) is going away altogether.

But all is not lost: Live Oak will still make an IPA, they're just not going to call it Liberation because they can't duplicate its distinct Cascade dry-hopped taste signature. The new one will simply be called
Live Oak IPA, and Chip says it tastes "fantastic."

Okay, the brewer himself isn't exactly an unbiased source, but given that I've never put a Live Oak product to my lips that I didn't love, I'm going to believe him and look forward to trying it.


Bill Night said...

Lee, next time you talk to a Texas brewer who doesn't yet brew a barleywine, put a bug in their ear to name it "Old Blevins" after the Austin Lounge Lizards song (and I-35 road sign). Matches the "Old X" naming convention for barleywines.

Oh, did I mention that there's a Barleywine Festival here tomorrow?

Lee said...

Thank god I'm nowhere near that barleywine festival. I love barleywines just a little too much. That sounds like a guaranteed vomit festival.

assurbanipaul said...

The story I heard from Chip is that due to supply, the Liberation will go seasonal and the Pale Ale will be "bumped up" to near IPA levels to compensate. First I've heard that this brand will be "discontinued," and I don't know how permanent this change is intended to be.