With the announcement that Hog Heaven will now be packaged exclusively in 12 oz. cans, Avery Brewing Company (Boulder, Colorado) has also officially changed the beer’s style classification from Barleywine to Imperial Red IPA.
Shortly after it was first released in 1998 as a Dry-Hopped Barleywine-Style Ale, Hog Heaven proved its worth by becoming “the beer that changed everything at Avery Brewing.” Brewed as an honest representation of Adam Avery’s love for big beers, this offering attracted a lot of attention to the brewery by earning “two Silver Medal wins at the Great American Beer Festival in 2004 and 2007, and subsequently set the stage for the bold beers that would follow such as The Maharaja in 2005, Rumpkin in 2011, Tweak in 2014.” Having never forgotten the incredibly impactful role this beer has played in their success, Avery employees often have a glass of Hog Heaven in hand during celebratory times at the brewery.
As the years have passed since 1998, the American craft beer industry has seen an incredible amount of growth and change. After much curiosity and experimentation, our nation’s brewers have expanded upon established beer styles and even created a few new ones. Truly being a beer before its time, Hog Heaven has now found a new classification as an Imperial Red India Pale Ale. The decision to make this style change was made with much consideration, and it is one that Avery Brewing Company feels better fits this iconic beer.
If you happen to be a Barleywine fan that is left a little bummed out by this news, worry not because Avery has plans in place to have Hog Heaven pay further respect to the style soon. Since Hog Heaven was greatly inspired by Bigfoot Barleywine-Style Ale, Avery Brewing Company will collaborate later this year with Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, California) to create a blend of both beers that will be featured in Sierra Nevada’s 2017 Beer Camp. Stay tuned because we will absolutely hit you with more news concerning this collaboration once more information surfaces.
Hog Heaven Imperial Red IPA is available now in its new packaging format of 4-packs of 12 oz. cans, and can be found at craft beer establishments in Alabama, Florida, Colorado and throughout the rest of Avery Brewing’s distribution area. Now that the brewery has introduced these cans, this does mean that Hog Heaven is no longer available in 22 oz. bombers.
Whether you wish to enjoy this beer as an American Barleywine or Imperial Red IPA, that is completely up to you since Hog Heaven remains the same beer despite the style reclassification. In the grand scheme of things, the change in name honestly means nothing. In our eyes, Hog Heaven is simply Hog Heaven. It remains a classic American craft beer that deserves the respect and attention of our community, so pick up a 4-pack in the near future to honor it as such. Prost!
Vital Information for Hog Heaven from Avery Brewing Company
Release – Year-Round, cans launch in March 2017
Style – Imperial Red India Pale Ale
ABV – 9.2%
IBUs – 102
Hops – Columbus
Malts – C-80 & 2-Row
Yeast – London Ale
Availability – 4-packs of 12 oz. cans & draft