Some beers are truly a labor of love.
I think I can say with confidence that Hummingbird falls into that category.
To quote Ned from the brewery, “Most of the low hanging fruit in the pastry stout game has been picked long ago.” And with that in mind, we put on our thinking caps and started spitballing ideas for our winter pastry offering. We went back and forth and the conversation had just started to lean towards making a pastry IPA instead of a stout when the Hummingbird cake suggestion (also Ned) popped up. Here we had a cake made with banana, pineapple, cinnamon, pecan, and an creamy lime zest frosting.
The flavor combination was intriguing and we felt it would match up perfectly in an well hopped DIPA. We started plugging away at a recipe and ended up with a nice blend of Pale Malt, Wheat Malt, Flaked Wheat, Flaked Oats, Dextrose, and Lactose hopped with Azacca and Mosaic to give a sweet, candy finish. We also added toasted Pecans (shout out to our brewer Paul) to the mash.
Once we got that in tank, Ned’s wife sent along a homemade Hummingbird cake for us to taste and be inspired. Needless to say Jules, you smashed it! The cake was an absolute ripper and I’m certain everyone had at least two pieces! Based on that cake, we decided to add 200kg of Pineapple, Vanilla, Cinnamon, additional toasted pecans, and some lime zest directly to the fermenter.
In the end, it came out big at 9%, erupting with tropical flavor reminiscent of the original Jamaican dessert with nice spices notes through to the finish. A velvety DIPA that drinks like dessert in a glass. Cheers! And remember, Drink Fresh!