Beer of the Week: Coconut Curry Hefeweizen from New Belgium


This week's Beer of the Week comes to us from New Belgium Brewing in Fort Collins, CO. They're best known for their year-round amber ale, Fat Tire, but the brewers at New Belgium have recently developed a whole new series of beers that focus on bold flavors and uncommon styles.

Bryan Simpson from New Belgium gives us the scoop on the development of this beer. "This one came about through our collaboration with a home brewer named Remi Bonnart. In 2010 he was named homebrewer of the year and he still home-brews along the Front Range. He was inspired by a recipe from Charlie Papazian's book Homebrewing Companion, who in turn was inspired by a 'curry freak' friend of his his, who based the recipe on a Sri Lankan crab curry recipe. Initially Remi thought the recipe was too out there, but he finally tried it with his own tweaks and was super pleased. Our version is the next generation of that."

See also:
Beer of the Week: Pumking from Southern Tier

The coconut curry Hefeweizen is a super spicy stunner that changes in character from sip to sip. It pours hazy and golden with a bit of a creamy head that helps offset some of the spices, which are plentiful in this effervescent, light-bodied beer. Aside from the pale, wheat, and Munich malts, the other ingredients in this beer read like the description of a dish from an Indian or Thai restaurant.

"Crazy spice bill on this one," says Simpson. "Cayenne pepper, cinnamon, coconut, coriander, fenugreek, ginger root, and lime -- fully delivers on the beer name's promise. It tastes like coconut and curry without a doubt. A Bavarian Weizen yeast adds banana and clove for good measure."

As far as pairing this out there beer, New Belgium's sensory expert Lauren Salazar recommends "just going there" with a pineapple and sweet shrimp curry or pairing with a feta omelet with caramelized onions, roasted garlic, and red peppers alongside a serving of roasted potatoes. Her last recommendation was for a late night lamb gyro: Pop a bottle and call it a night cap. The local combination we like best is a glass alongside the pumpkin stew with king crab, blue prawns, and panang curry served adorably in a hollowed-out pumpkin at Haute Dish

Luckily it's already on tap there, but you can also find this unique Hefeweizen at Muddy Waters in Lyn-Lake, the Nomad World Pub in Cedar-Riverside, and in bottles at Stinson Wine and Spirits in Northeast.

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