Us & Them: A Two Thread Brewing Experience

17 February, 2016

At first glance our imaginations went right to Pink Floyd's song from Dark Side of the Moon when we saw this beer. Summit Brewing Company's latest Unchained Series is far from Pink Floyd related but still very cool.  The 21st beer in the limited-release Unchained Series is a two-part beer experience, one an American IPA, the other a Session IPA. Both will be available on draught and in mixed 12-ounce bottle six-packs the third week of February.

Brewer Gabe Smoley’s Unchained 21: Us & Them is a truly unique craft beer exploration. Gabe has deconstructed the mash of Summit’s popular Sága IPA recipe into two unique "threads" to forge two distinct beers: a hoppy and intense American IPA and a complex but subtle Session IPA. This unique brewing experience explores the two extreme flavor profiles and drinking differences you can discover in one package from one, original beer recipe. Also consider it an experiment in brewing psychology: which beer do you think is “Us” and which beer is “Them”? Which brew defines you? Unchained 21 six-packs include three bottles of each brew so you can compare them side by side.

“I wanted to do more with this project than just make a beer,” Smoley said. “I wanted to do something different. Something that legitimately offered our Summit fans a truly real craft beer drinking experience. The Us & Them project, for me, does just that. It takes something people are familiar with in our Sága IPA beer and pulls it apart into two polar opposites of itself. It’s not just another six-pack off the shelf. It’s an exploration of historic brewing ideas and practices like parti-gyle and multi-thread brewing that many people have probably never experienced or even heard of before. That, to me, is offering our drinkers something honest, something different, and something nobody else has given them.”


1st Thread: American IPA Information
Malts: 2-Row Pale, Caramel
Hops: Horizon, Centennial, Amarillo, Citra, Rakau (dry-hopped with Rakau)
ABV: 7.2%
IBU: 90
Color: Saffron
Yeast: American Ale

2nd Thread: Session IPA Information
Malts: 2-Row Pale, Caramel
Hops: Horizon, Centennial, Amarillo, Citra, Rakau, (dry-hopped with Citra)
ABV: 4.0%
IBU: 55
Color: Sunglow
Yeast: American Ale


About the Unchained Series
The Unchained Series, which saw its first batch in 2009, allows each of Summit’s individual brewers to showcase their creativity by letting them break free from the norm and create their own beer. “We’re fortunate to have eight phenomenal brewers at Summit,” said Mark Stutrud, founder and president of Summit Brewing Company. “The Unchained Series is a way for our brewers to showcase their artistry. There are no budgetary restraints, no outside influences from a sales team, and the brewers are free to collect ingredients from anywhere in the world. As long as it’s legal, they have complete autonomy.”