Our latest Intelligent Design* offering comes from brewer Kyle Kennedy, who put his own spin on a kristallweizen, a clearer version of a classic hefeweizen. He gave us the lowdown on his inspiration for Choose Weizely and why those who miss Cynic might want to check this one out.
*If you’re unfamiliar, Intelligent Design is the name of our brewer-driven series of beers, wherein a brewer develops a beer concept and work with the Head Brewer and Brand Development team to bring that beer to life as a tap in the Surly beer hall. The entire process mimics Surly’s R&D process for developing new brands to bring to market, from brewhouse logistics to scaling up recipes to consumer appeal.
First of all, who are you, where are you from, what is your job title, and how long have you worked at Surly?
My name is Kyle Kennedy, I’m a native of St. Paul, and I’ve been a shift brewer at Surly for two years.
How did you get into brewing?
I started home brewing when I was 21. Later, I got a job in the Surly warehouse, and when a position opened on the brewing side, I decided to take a shot at turning my hobby into a career.
What was the first craft beer you really got into?
To be honest, Shiner Bock.
What was your inspiration for making a kristallwiezen?
I really, really like beers with a strong yeast character. I loved Cynic, and when that went into retirement, I wanted a Surly beer with that kind of yeast character.
What kind of hop/malt bill did you go with?
Bohemian pils malt, pale wheat, and carahell, all German malts. I used Hallertau hops for bittering.
Any extra ingredients?
Nope. What you see is what you get.
What kind of flavors/aromatics should drinkers expect?
Subtle banana, clove, and black pepper. It’s not an in-your-face banana bomb.
If there’s anything else you’d like the drinking public to know about the beer, please tell them now:
It’s a light and flavorful summer drinker. Crush one the next time you’re in the Beer Hall.
Choose Weizely starts pouring in the Beer Hall on Wednesday, June 22.