Why a New Kolsch Made Sense for Fair State

When Fair State Cooperative Brewing expanded its distribution into Chicago, it knew it wanted to time that with the release of a new year-round beer.

Thus, KÖLD, a Kolsch-style ale, was born. The no-frills, simple drinkable beer was one that head brewer Joe Wells called “a perfect fit” for the Minnesota brewery’s official entrance into a burgeoning Midwestern metropolis.

The light, easy drinking beer intended to appeal to any kind of beer drinker is making its debut as a year-round release. Prior to KÖLD’s debut, Fair State previously produced KÖLD-STYLE as a limited release in collaboration with Austin, Texas-based St. Elmo Brewing Company in Austin — a similar beer with a couple of variations in the ingredients.

“We wanted that beer to come out when we launched Chicago,” Wells told Brewer Magazine. “It’s one of the last big markets we’re going to be exploring — at least for the time being.”

The brewery said KÖLD is crisp, bright, and probably more hoppy than its European forebears. It was produced using a cool fermentation technique and cold lagered.The end result is a crisp beer with a hint of citrus that comes in at 4.7% ABV.

“The beers we love are succinct — we like Lager beers,” Wells said. “The beer that is near and dear to all of our hearts is our Pilsner. We’re phasing out our pale cereal mash corn Lager and replacing it with KÖLD, so we needed something that would be highly drinkable but still interesting and full of depth and delicacy.

“It’s interesting, but it’s still a beer that you can sit down in your yard in the summertime with and drink four or five of them. That’s where I like to think our beers shine in general.”

Ingredients include Carafoam along with Sterling hops, Kolsch yeast, and a North Star Pils malt from Rahr Malting, their neighbors in Minnesota.

“One of the most beautiful things we have is a great malting facility right outside our door,” Wells said. “They make great malts and they really shine in a beer like this one.”

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