Radius 2019 Trend Predictions: IPA Evolution

The category is evolving again, with a number of new styles emerging that are moving firmly away from the long established race to be the most bitter, fruity, or hazy

IPAs have very much been at the core of the rise of craft brewing, with experimentation with hop levels, high strengths, and even a somewhat controversial move into black IPAs, credited as bringing consumers into the category.


New England IPAs have become increasingly popular in recent years. These purposely hazy or cloudy beers typically have a smooth, creamy mouthfeel, in a deliberate departure from the dry, bitter mouthfeel associated with West Coast IPAs.

Brut IPAs have been described as ‘champagne-like’, due to their pale, dry and highly effervescent characteristics. Rising rapidly in popularity, the style is made with an enzyme called amyloglucosidase that converts unfermentable starches to fermentable sugars, resulting in the highly bubbly mouthfeel and discernibly lower bitterness. Though the style first began as a process innovation in a San Francisco brewpub, its rapid rise in popularity has seen it taken on by brewers globally.

Examples include Et Tu Brut IPA from the UK’s Wilde Beer Company which launched in late October, as a collaboration with Brooklyn’s Stillwater Brewery. Of the beer, the company said: “Using a super attenuator in the boil we have managed to create a low perceived bitterness, whilst retaining a solid tropical hop profile. By adding Ekuanot hops, we’ve created vinous notes giving a character resembling Brut Champagne. These features consolidate, resulting in a crisp and truly distinctive IPA.” The Hopewell Brewing Company in Chicago meanwhile, makes Clique, a 6.5% ABV that is dry, sparkling and with aromas of peach and tropical fruit. We expect more to come to market soon.


Radius, the IWSR’s innovation tracker, brings you the latest product launches and new consumer trends driving the market. Available online or as quarterly trend reports.

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