The Way Greater Good is Boosting ABVs in Low-Strength Styles

Greater Good recently announced a new year-round beer called Bombshell, an Imperial Blonde that ups the typical low-ABV style and imperializes it. That beer is an integral part of the story that Greater Good plans to tell in 2023 around innovation in imperializing traditionally low-ABV style beers.

“As the only all-imperial brewing company we have a goal of pushing the envelope on what imperial beers can be and setting the bar for the segment in terms of innovation and quality,” said CEO Colleen Quinn.

Innovating in that space will help bring in new consumers that may not be fans of imperialized IPAs and Stouts, which the brand has built itself upon. The addition of imperialized sours was the first step, but now Quinn said that Greater Good is looking all over the list of styles to create boosted ABVs.

“We’re excited with the path that we’ve been on with low-ABV styles that we imperialize between the success of our Fruited Sour Series (55 Funk Series) and of Bombshell, so we’re going to continue to innovate in that space,” she said.

“We’re constantly brainstorming new ideas, but a few that I’m particularly excited about this year are Imperial Mexican Lager, Imperial Czech Pilsners, and Imperial Oktoberfest/Marzen.”

Boosting these ABVs takes art and it’s a challenge the brewery’s production team welcomed.

“I think our biggest learning was to have confidence in our skills and expertise in brewing amazing imperial beers,” Quinn said. “Initially our brewers weren’t even sure if we could pull off the Imperial Blonde and have it taste great, but they delivered and that makes them more excited and confident to experiment with other styles.

“Additionally, by trying new styles (and traditionally low ABV styles), it helps us hone our skills to continue to brew well-balanced, drinkable high ABV beers.”

The brew team nails down the malt and hop varieties along with quantities to gear the recipe towards a targeted ABV along with matching a flavor profile to deliver on the consumer’s expectations for the style, but at an imperialized ABV, Quinn said.

During recipe development, the Greater Good team would look to stay true to the style they were creating while still amplifying the ABV to “imperialize it.”

“Very malt-forward or very hoppy beers can be seen as easier to increase the ABV overall given the more overt/strong flavors that can be amplified alongside the ABV to mask a level of booziness and keep our imperial beers very drinkable,” Quinn said.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.