Quiet Storm is an upcoming series of single hopped craft beers.
Every iteration of Quiet Storm will be a 5.5% pale ale brewed with the same malt, the same yeast and the same process.
In fact, the only difference between these beers will be the hop we use to make it. This seemingly minor change, however, will be enough to make these beers taste completely different.
The idea for Quiet Storm came from Beer Club, our monthly subscription service. Every month we send the newest and most exciting craft beer to our most dedicated fans, the members of Thornbridge Beer Club. We wondered how we could create a narrative that tied the boxes together, and series of incrementally changing beers was one way we could do that.
Sharing our knowledge and passion for beer has always been part of Thornbridge’s mission, and this is a way that we can teach the public about the hops we use. Someone doesn’t need to be that dedicated a craft beer fan to start recognising the names of hops, but it is another thing entirely to be able to pinpoint the exact flavours and aromas each hop contributes.
So the idea emerged to create something of a “Flavour Catalogue” of single hop beers. Each beer would give its drinker a chance to explore a hop, to really take in what that hop tastes and smells like. That knowledge can then be taken to other beers, allowing the drinker to recognise flavours and identify patterns across beers.
The thought process that went into choosing the hops for Quiet Storm was flavour. We wanted strong, distinctive flavours that even the most untrained of palates could identify and compare. Our earliest editions demonstrate this perfectly.
The first iteration of Quiet Storm uses Idaho 7, part of a new breed of American C-Hops. It’s an exciting up and coming hop you might have seen recently being used in powerful West Coast IPAs. C-Hops are American style hops with big flavours, named as such because all of the most famous hops of this style have names that start with C: Cascade, Centennial, Chinook, Citra, and Columbus. Like these, Idaho-7 has formidable pine resin and citrus characteristics, but carries with them a splash of stunning stone and tropical fruit that makes Idaho-7 so interesting.
The next hop we will use in the series will be Sabro, which is both utterly unique and aggressively strong. People who taste Sabro detect a range of complex tropical flavours, most distinct of all being the undeniable taste of coconut.
The hops that we are using in this series come from around the world: America, Australia, Germany, New Zealand and England. As the drinker becomes more familiar with the range of hops we use, they should start to notice similarities between hops from similar regions. Hops, like everything else, are massively affected by where they are grown, which of course affects the styles of beers from those regions. Despite Quiet Storm being a series of pale ales that are almost the same on paper, each beer will be part of a trip around the world.
This journey of hop discovery has only just begun, and we are so excited to be able to share it with the public. We hope you’ll join us, and see for yourself what all of these different hops can do.