It sounds like the title of a jazz-fusion record.

At Brew Republic, we brew a lot of different beers… 22 to be exact. And that’s just the regulars that have been planned out so far. Once we get into the collaborations and mysterious one-offs phase of our brewing schedule, it will probably end up being a lot more than our initial planned 22.

But what’s the method to our madness you ask? It’s actually a complex formula that includes convoluted algorithms and abstract calculations that would confuse even the brightest minds.

Or maybe we make it seem harder than it actually is.

The first driving principle of our beer designs is adherence to the classically defined style guidelines of the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP). This is the annually-updated guide book of beer styles that the judges of the major beer competitions use to judge our beers. This isn’t to say that we are obsessed with winning awards, but as far as universally approved guidelines go, this is the one. It gives us brewers something to nerd out about, but it also gives the consumer a little peace of mind that the blonde ale you order is actually a blonde ale.

But that’s just the foundation of our recipe writing. The inspiration for what beer styles get added to our rotation is much more complicated.

We start by toiling over beer blogs, websites, forums, social media and talking to people to establish what the beer consumers want. It’s all well and good if our brewers want to make a particular style, but if the people have no interest in that style, it does us no good to brew it and have it sit on the shelf not being drunk. The vox populi (voice of the people) is critical to ensuring that we are brewing what you want to drink.

Then there is the real internal war – our brew master is a “malt-forward” devotee, while her assistant brewer is a bona fide hophead. This ongoing struggle makes for heated debates and flying beer ingredients, but more often than not ends in compromise. The good news for you lucky craft beer fans is that the two balance each other out, as well as our recipes and rotating styles, and are actually a benefit to the end product. Otherwise we would be one of those “everything is hoppy” breweries, or one of those nuanced malt bill breweries, both of which have their place of course, but that’s not what we are.

The final factor that goes into our flight crafting logic is our desire to offer many different styles and cover as many preferences as possible. Some people like German lagers and others prefer spicy Belgian ales. Some of you are obsessed with citrusy American hops and others prefer the European noble varieties. There are people who like fruit in their beer, and some who call that anathema. Some of you even like sours. We hear you all, and completely agree with all of the above. The beers we brew are chosen deliberately to reflect as much of what I just listed as is possible.

So without further ado, let’s get into the rotation a little bit. Our beers all fall into one of four categories according to rotation.

The core flight consists of eight beers, including a Helles Munich Lager, an Amber Ale, an American Pale Ale, an American India Pale Ale, a Witbier, an American Blonde Ale, a Baltic Porter and a Sweet Stout. These styles were selected to appeal to as many people as possible, with particular consideration for craft beer beginners, hopheads and dark beer fans. You will always be able to find at least four of these on our taps at any time, and we will make an effort to have at least one lighter beer, one hoppy beer and one dark beer amongst those four.

Beyond the core, there are two rotator categories that we brew year round. The first is the IPA Rotator series. This series consists of a Double IPA, a Black IPA/Cascadian Ale, a Red IPA, a Rye IPA and a White IPA. These are all hop-forward creations and are scheduled to rotate in and out throughout the year, with a touch of consideration to seasons. In other words, expect the White IPA in the summer, the Red in the fall, the Black in the winter and the Rye in the spring. Oh, and that Double… he’ll be around a few times a year at his leisure. We’ll be sure to announce his arrival.

The second rotation is our Seasonal Rotator series. As the name suggests, these beers will rotate according to seasonal considerations. These beers are our Hefeweizen and Farmhouse Ale in the summer, our Pumpkin Ale and Oktoberfest Lager in the fall, our Christmas Ale, Winter Warmer and Wee Heavy in the winter and our Maibock and Belgian Dubbel in the spring. As we go along, we may add to or subtract from these planned styles according to public outcry and national beer trends.

The fourth and final category our beers will fall into is the Limited Edition and Experimental category. These beers remain undefined, and will usually be added one at a time as we get a wild idea to create something different, or as we collaborate with our friends. There is also a plan in the works to create an anniversary beer every year, which will certainly fall into this category.

So now you have a little insight into the inner–workings of the Brew Republic brewing brain-trust. We’ve only scratched the surface as far as the total body of knowledge is concerned, but trust me… you don’t want full access. It’s pretty scary in here. All this talk of beer is making me thirsty.

To the Republic (if you can keep it)… Cheers!

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