Beer Background
Beer Hall at Hawkshead Brewery #2

Let slip the dogs of brew war

Added: Wednesday, March 28th 2012

Flying Dog brewery of Maryland in the United States has thrown down a challenge to BrewDog of Fraserburgh in Scotland to compete in a India Pale Ale collaboration they are calling the International Arms Race.

But by mutual agreement, what they call beer’s “principal weapon of mass destruction” – the hop – has been withdrawn from the competition. “Each of us producing our own beer highlights the human element of the brewing process,” Flying Dog brewmaster Matt Brophy says. “Even with the same ingredients, the hands that craft it are hugely influential in the end product.”

To achieve a Zero IBU [units of bitterness] IPA, the brewers agreed on a list of ingredients -- spearmint, bay leaves, rosemary, juniper berries and elderflower – to replace the bitterness typically imparted by hops. Both beers will be 7.5%.

“When the hardcore team at Flying Dog challenged us to do battle, there was no way we wouldn’t take them on,” BrewDog’s James Watt says. “Well, it’s time to see who is boss.”

Both beers will be available in bottle and keg from beer importer James Clay from June. Legendary caricaturist Ralph Steadman and long-time friend of BrewDog, Johanna Basford, will also go head to head to create the best illustration for their beer labels.

Nigel Stevenson of James Clay said: “This will be the battle of the year. Forget the Olympics – this should really excite.”

*Pictured above is one of BrewDog's regular IPAs, made with hops. Now hops will be sidelined in the new brew.

BrewDog IPA