The New England IPA (NEIPA) or Hazy IPA is a unique beer style that continues to climb in popularity. More and more breweries are starting to emulate the phenomenon known as the “haze craze,” giving way to opaque, cloudy glasses with intense tropical fruit notes. In its GABF competition debut, the Hazy IPA style category featured the most entries out of any other style to date with 391 entries. Toppling its predecessor of the American Indian Pale Ale (IPA) with 311 entries that held the podium since 2002.
The Hazy IPA offers massive hop flavor, but with a smooth mouthfeel and bitterness; opening the door to both hop heads and people who don’t usually connect with bitter beers. One reason to help explain is looking at how hops are introduced. Hop additions are primarily added in the whirlpool and fermenter. Yes, you read that correctly. We said fermenter with little to no hops added to the kettle. Hop additions on the cold side takes advantage of the biotransformation that takes place when yeast converts oxygenated hop oils into fruity tasting esters, acetates, and other compounds.