It’s no secret that the brewers from craft beer mainstay Dogfish Head like their hoppy beers. Their signature 60 Minute, 90 Minute and 120 Minute IPAs clock in at 60, 90 and 120 IBUs (short for International Bitterness Units) respectively. But the Delaware-based brewery says they’re about to outdo themselves – outdo everyone, really – and release what they claim is the hoppiest beer ever certified by a third-party lab.
Hoo Lawd, which is set to be tapped tomorrow at the brand’s Rehoboth Beach brewpub, was independently certified by White Labs Pure Yeast and Fermentation as coming in at a mind-blowing 658.5 IBUs. The beer “is the highest IBU sample we have analyzed,” wrote Analytical Lab Manager Kara Taylor in letter from April of this year. “In order to get the sample to read in the correct range on the spectrophotometer the sample was diluted 1:100.”
To get such a high IBU, Dogfish Head used an experimental hop, HBC342, also called “Alpha Beast,” as well as Simcoe, Warrior and Amarillo hops. But the bigger experiment was in the process; each of these hops was added in CO2 extract form. "Basically," said Dogfish founder Sam Calagione, "the process uses the pressure created by gas to force out the oils and the matter that creates the bitterness in hops so that it’s in its most condensed form." Brewmaster Tim Hawn said that the results are four times more concentrated than typical hops.