Independence Gets Political, Releases Summer Seasonal Inspired By Radical Campaign Platform

Ahead of its fifteenth anniversary, Independence Brewing Co. announced the release of Freak Power, a new blood orange hefeweizen named in honor of Hunter S. Thompson’s groundbreaking campaign for sheriff of Aspen in 1970. The beer will debut just in time to kickoff the voter registration period for Texas residents ahead of state elections in 2019 and national elections in 2020. Just as Thompson created the “Freak Power Party” to inspire fellow “freaks” to vote, Independence Brewing aims to inspire the inner freak in all of us to participate in our democracy.

“Now, more than ever, we need to encourage each other to speak up and enact change,” said Amy Cartwright, President and Co-Founder of Independence Brewing Co. “The 2020 election is a critical moment for our nation and will set the political agenda for the coming years. With Freak Power, we sought to create something that ignites enthusiasm the way Hunter S. Thompson did back in 1970.”

Freak Power is part of Independence Brewing’s upcoming initiative to help spread political awareness and civic engagement among eligible voters in markets where their beer is sold. As part of the Freak Power rollout, team members will be deputized as volunteer voter registrars for Travis County and voter registration drives will be hosted at the South Austin brewery ahead of Texas state elections on November 5, 2019. In addition to the brewery’s efforts in Austin, Independence Brewing’s sales representatives throughout the state will organize promotional events at local bars and retailers and assist on-site voter registration.

The recipe for Freak Power is a twist on the classic Bavarian Hefeweizen, balancing the sweet clove esters with the citrusy tang of blood orange. The result is a hef that starts like a traditional German wheat beer and ends with a crisp finish that doesn’t linger too long on the palate. It pairs best with light, starchy, and lemony foods, and at 5.4% ABV, Freak Power is an ideal candidate to engage and mobilize voters of all stripes—without clouding their judgment.

“We wanted to take the classic hef and hit it with an unforgettable kick,” said Head Brewer Brannon Radicke. “To be honest, the hefeweizen is not my favorite style of beer; they’re usually cloyingly sweet and the banana esters can be overwhelming. Fortunately, one of our team members, Calibur Clarke, is a big fan of the style. Calibur and I brewed a blood orange hef last year on our pilot system and we were all blown away. The tanginess of the citrus cuts a little bit of that sweetness and dries out the finish. Plus the fruitiness of the blood oranges pairs nicely with the style’s signature clove and banana esters.”

The seasonal brew is available through September at the taproom and at local retailers throughout Texas. The can will be easy to spot, too. Bright pink and orange graphics against a matte-black backdrop will make this beer a standout on store shelves.

“The design decisions for Freak Power are inspired by ideas and aesthetics tied to the free thinkers and radical minds of the late 60s,” said designer Lauren Dickens. “The color palette and energetic rays behind the illustration are a nod to the burst of blood orange flavor in the beer.”

This release follows Independence’s recent design rebrand and comes ahead of its 15-year anniversary, making the business one of the longest standing craft breweries in Central Texas.

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