No #fomo for me as I have acquired one of this year’s beery box sets. The rainbow collaboration sets have been the headliners over the last few years and now new sets of collaborative brews have been appearing.
Last year saw North Sea Bridges which saw Scotland’s Black Isle, Fallen, Fierce Beer, Fyne, Pilot and Six Degrees North pair up with Amundsen, Beerbliotek, Dry & Bitter, Dugges, Rocket & To Øl.
Northern Powerhouse was originally set up by Newcastle-based Wylam Brewery in 2018, and sees independent craft breweries from across the North of England coming together for collaboration brews.
The first series of beers was brewed in 2018, to coincide with the launch of the Great Exhibition of the North. The project was so successful that Wylam decided that it should be an annual event and given to a different brewery to host each year.
This year’s Northern Powerhouse series was brewed entirely at Northern Monk’s Leeds brewery and comprises collaborations with Wylam, Track, North Brew Co, Donzoko, Buxton, Cloudwater, and By the River.
Let’s see what this year’s box of goodies holds…
Northern Monk x Track – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 001 – Small IPA
Track, who have a track record for session beers, have put together the lightest of the Powerhouse beers. This small IPA is loaded with Citra, Ahtanum and Blanc hops for resinous tropical and stone fruit notes backed up by a floral, gooseberry finish over a robust malt bill designed to boost the beer beyond its restrained ABV.
Northern Monk x North Brewing Co – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 002 – Triple Fruited Gose
North Brew Co are neighbours of Northern Monk in Leeds, and they put together a fruit sour. Showcasing the fleshy cactus fruit prickly pear, we then backed it up with the zingy tropical notes of guava, a touch of tangy raspberry and rounded everything out with milk sugar and salt.
Northern Monk x Donzoko – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 003 – Bavarian Pilsner
A crisp, modern take on the Bavarian Pilsner with one of the up-and-coming brewers of the UK, Donzoko. A simple grist of German pilsner and vienna malt is supported by the floral, citrus notes of American Loral hops and stone fruit undertones from Hallertau Blanc.
Northern Monk x Wylam – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 004 – Tropical Sour IPA
Northern Monk joined series originators Wylam for this tropical sour IPA. Kettle-soured overnight and whirlpooled with Mosaic, 200g/l of pureed tropical fruits were then added and it was dry hopped with El Dorado and Citra.
Northern Monk x Buxton – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 005 – IPA
It’s not secret that Buxton quietly continue to make some of the best IPAs in the UK so it was an obvious choice to team up with them to revisit the west coast IPA. Packed with classic US hops, this beer is resinous, piney and packs a long citrus finish over a sticky malt back bone.
Northern Monk x Cloudwater – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 006 – Double IPA
For the double IPA in this series, Cloudwater came in to help brew this Nelson Sauvin-led offering. Backed up with the classic tropical notes of Citra, NZ Nelson brings tons of gooseberry and sauvignon grape character to this smooth, oat-rounded beer.
Northern Monk x By The River – Northern Powerhouse Brew Series 007 – Imperial Maple Brown
Newcastle brewers and brown ales are made for each other. This imperial take on the style features heritage malts, a range of crystals and of course, brown roast malt. We then loaded the FV with rich maple syrup for a decadent treat.
Looking forward to checking all of these out…