Last fall, Sierra Nevada invited Surly to participate in their 2017 Beer Camp Across the World. The legendary craft brewery invites 12 other breweries (six domestic, six foreign) to each collaborate on a beer, and the results are found in their Beer Camp 12-packs. Needless to say, we accepted.
Head Brewers Ben Smith and Jerrod Johnson flew out to North Carolina and teamed up with Sierra Nevada brewer Michael Palmer on a refreshing ginger lager, meant to be an easy-drinking summer beer that traveled well. We added a healthy dose of ginger puree and a small amount of cayenne to emphasize the ginger heat, used honeycombed red oak to add vanilla notes and round out the flavor, and dry-hopped it with Sterling hops for some spicy and herbal notes. The result, which is on shelves now, is “very balanced, incredibly drinkable, and one of the sleeper hits of the Beer Camp pack.” (That’s from Sierra Nevada, not just us bragging it up.)
We were big fans of the result, too, so we asked Sierra Nevada if we could brew up a batch inspired by the Ginger Lager for the Beer Hall. They gladly obliged, and even sent Michael to MSP so he could collaborate with us on this round.
The result is Spice Boyz (with a “z”), and is on tap in the Beer Hall. We’ve heard from patrons and stores that Beer Camp sales are extremely brisk, so if you’ve been unable to land a 12-er, this might be your best chance to try the next best thing.
One other note: If you’re attending the Pride Dabbler on Friday, June 23rd, you’ll be able to sample an Extra Hot Spice Boyz firkin, which elevates the ginger and cayenne kick of the original with Vietnamese chilies and guajillo peppers.