· By Georgia Pearson

What's Hazy Beer?

Craft beer trends of late have seen us demanding for yet more flavour from our regular order. Perhaps due to the inescapable cost of living crisis, many are opting for high quality, savourable pints - if we’re spending our hard earned cash on nice-to-haves, we want to know they’re going to be delicious! Enter the hazy pale…

Hazy pales generally have low bitterness and a full, edging on fruity profile, with a touch of sweetness and, as the name suggests, a degree of haze. 

The haze factor in hazy pales can be anything from just off transparent, all the way up to almost opaque. This move away from clarity in beer is not to be confused with unfiltered beer. All Crate beers fall into this category (why strip out all those molecules of flavour and aroma goodness?!). While unfiltered beers have a natural level of haziness, intentional Haze comes from the distinct composition of malts, yeasts and hops. The days of haziness as an indicator for an ‘off keg’ are behind us! Fun fact: this is where the term “ropey” originates, as extreme cases formed ropey strands in the liquid.

The science behind good haze is all about proteins and yeast. Haze is caused by protein from the grains and malts (oats and wheat), and polyphenols (the molecules in nature that make fruit taste and smell good) from the hops. Molecules from the hops bind to the protein, retaining more aromatics and flavour. This haze also adds to the texture of beer, creating a thicker mouthfeel, which is commonly smoothed out with the addition of Kveik yeast, as in our version. Kveik doesn’t flocculate as much as other yeasts, meaning the haze stays in suspension through the brew.

Our new favourite style developed after the burgeoning popularity of IPAs. IPAs are often more ‘bitter’ by design, as the style demands an abundance of hops to achieve an impactful flavour. In contrast, our Haze uses very late and dry hopping of El Dorado, Mosaic and Citra. The result? Low low bitterness, without a compromise on the flavour. In essence, we’re harnessing those characteristics often found in New England IPAs, and producing a more sessionable version (4.6%).

The passionfruit, white grape and apricot notes of CRATE Haze make it well suited to sippping through laid back, easy afternoons - canalside, in the pub or at the beach.