Brew Review: A Refreshing Inspiration — Independence Brewing

A few years back, Austin, Texas had a particularly brutal summer, and the brewing team for Independence Brewing was looking for a way to stay hydrated while working in a 110 degree brewhouse. Instead of just plain water, the brewers started adding cucumber to the water cooler to spice things up.

Before long, they started experimenting with adding cucumber to the brewery’s Redbud Berliner Weisse, and now the brewery has a spring varietal, Cucumber Redbud — a GABF medalist.

“We find that the cucumber addition cuts some of the lactic tartness of the Berliner Weisse and delivers a lingering, cooling cucumber flavor on the finish,” explained Nick Hiller, Marketing Director at Independence.

For many years, Texas has lagged behind the development of craft beer that the rest of the country has experienced, particularly the Sour craze. When Independence first brewed Redbud in 2015, it was one of the first of its kind in Texas, and Hiller likes to think that it helped to create a market for all of the subsequent Berliner Weisse beers that many other local breweries now offer.

“It was certainly a bit of an uphill battle at first, which is to be expected with something that is such a departure from what people new to Sours think beer should taste like,” Hiller said. “But through the hard work of our sales team, lots of education and marketing outreach, the solid support of our top notch distributors and retailers, we have been able to—in remarkable time—catch up with the rest of the country.”

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