East Coast vs. West Coast. Tupac vs. Biggie. West Coast-style IPA’s vs. New England-style IPA’s. And now it’s Thin Man Brewery and Pressure Drop Brewing who are keeping the coast-to-coast battle raging by pitting dank against haze with their new duel collaboration series, Panic Attacks and Night Terrors. Both beers will hit taps this week. Pressure Drop will send kegs to Thin Man to serve and vice versa, so both beers will be available at both locales.
The series features the same beer brewed at each location, with Panic Attacks, a filtered West Coast-style IPA, being brewed at Pressure Drop and Night Terrors, a hazy New England-style IPA, brewed at Thin Man. Each beer features the same grain bill and hop bill, Citra, Mosaic, Simcoe and CTZ (all extract, dry hopped with pellet), but the true difference is that Panic Attacks is brewed with West Coast Ale Yeast and Night Terrors is brewed with London Ale III yeast.
“It’s a beer experiment,” Pressure Drop Head Brewer Karl Kolbe says. “We want people to be able to have these side by side and taste both the beers.” According to Kolbe, Thin Man’s Night Terrors is a ‘fruit salad’ that features tropical pineapple notes, while Panic Attack is crystal clear and very crisp with a clean finish.
“Why the same beer? It’s fun and informative to both the customer and us,” Thin Man’s Rudy Watkins adds, “to see the impacts of process and a few different ingredients on a beer. There are going to be similarities for sure, but lots of differences too. So basically all grain and hops were the same. We used different yeast (his is American, ours in English) l treated our water differently & I added the whirlpool hops at a lower temperature than he did. He’s filtering his beer & ours will be hazy. I think that you’re gonna see more bitterness come through on Pressure Drop’s version, a bit more juicy on ours. Karl’s will also be a little higher in ABV and drier. It’ll be fun to see which the customer prefers.”
Watkins says that the genesis of the collaborations dates back to well before Kolbe moved back to Buffalo for good. “Karl and I had talked about doing a beer together forever ago. We first met when he was home visiting from California and came into CBW. It just didn’t come together until now!”
And as for the names of the beers, Watkins admits that those were inspired by the life of a brewer and the stress that comes with the job. “Both Karl and I are… stressed people. At one point we were having a conversation where we realized we both wake up in the middle of the night fretting about our beers and just can’t get back to sleep.”
“When Rudy and I were coming up with the recipes, I said to him that we should name the beers something similar but different,” Kolbe adds. “And I said what if we called it Panic Attacks and Night Terrors, and he liked it, so he picked Night Terrors. I mean, how many times have we [as brewers] woken up in the middle of the night to wonder how the yeast is doing and then don’t fall asleep for like three hours. Sometimes you lose a little sleep over you beer.”
Regardless of your IPA preference, grab a pint of both Night Terrors and Panic Attacks and judge for yourself. Do you like the haze and the juice or do you prefer the dank? Take part in the experiment and who knows, you might find out something entirely new about yourself. Or at least about the IPA’s you drink.
For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/pressurebrewers/ and https://www.facebook.com/ThinManBrewery/. You can also find out more about the beer release at https://www.facebook.com/events/1763189783990043/.
Brian Campbell is a co-founder/Brand Manager of the BNBA’s enthusiast arm, Buffalo Beer League, and writes the weekly Buffalo Beer Buzz column. If you have beer news that should be included in the Beer Buzz, Brian can be reached at email@example.com, on Twitter (@buffbeerleague), Instagram (@buffalobeerleague), Facebook (@thebuffalobeerleague) and www.buffalobeerleague.com.