Our latest Intelligent Design beer comes from Francis Willette, Senior Brewer at our Brooklyn Center facility. This is the story of Pizza Party Lager.
HOW’D YOU GET HERE: “I studied econ at UW-Madison and eventually realized I didn’t want to sit at a desk. I did realize that I loved craft beer and got an apprenticeship through the American Brewers Guild at Surly. I guess they liked me enough to keep me around afterwards and I’ve been here ever since.”
WHAT IS PIZZA PARTY LAGER: “I love having pizza in one hand and a light, easy, and crushable beer in the other. Why not make my own? I pitched the idea to (Brooklyn Center Lead Brewer) Josh Lemke and brand development team, developed the recipe, made a pilot batch, and got the green light to make a 30-barrel version for the Intelligent Design program.”
“The beer itself is super light bodied, finishes crisp and dry, and gets a subtle sweetness from the adjuncts (corn and flaked corn) in the mash. It’s pizza’s best friend.”
FAVORITE PART OF THE PROCESS: “Trying a can of the beer I made fresh off the line. Being able to see it on tap in the Beer Hall is icing on the cake. I’m excited for other brewers to get this chance.”
FAVORITE SURLY BEER THAT ISN’T THIS ONE: “Axe Man and Abrasive.”
Pizza Party is on tap now in the Beer Hall and, of course, Surly Pizza Upstairs. We’ll even be debuting a new pizza to pair with it at SPU: Accessory After the Fact (meatball, banana pepper, pickled red onion, chili flake, and mozzarella), inspired by S3E9 of The Sopranos.