Author: Will Ziebell, The Crafty Pint
Original Article published on 30 January 2024
Hawkers Beer have set their sights on all things yeast for their first Experimental Series release of 2024. In 2023, they dove deep into the impact time and place had on hops, which you can read more about here, here and here. But From Yeast To West sees the Melbourne brewery explore three distinct yeast strains via the same base West Coast recipe and Yakima Chief’s trial Idaho 7 hop, YCH 701.
Starting off with the most classically (West) Coastal of the three, US-05 Yeast uses that stalwart of craft beer to create an impeccably balanced and quintessential IPA. It means you’ll find a combination of pine, resin, grapefruit and light floral notes drift across the palate before a clean bitterness kicks through.
Next up is everyone’s favourite Norwegian strain, Kveik Yeast (which is a bit of a redundancy given Kveik means yeast so it’s a bit like saying ATM machine or Jeb Bush - what an odd family). Although this beer is as clear as US-05, it’s an incredibly juicy affair, with lush mango, melon and tropical punch bowl all coming together as one.
Lastly, there's Thiolised Yeast, a beer that makes use of a strain developed to pump out more of the highly aromatic thiol compounds common in heavily-hopped beers. Like with the Kveik, it's quite a juicy beast but rather than being heavy on the tropical, it's more a mix of orange and stone fruit that's been added to the blender while a touch of pine and fresh-cut grass joins in.
If you'd like to know a little more about Hawker's experimental approach, then you can read their blog post here.