To celebrate the rich brewing history of Cincinnati, we collaborated with our friends at Urban Artifact on a tart New England IPA brewed with Paw Paw fruit called TriCorne. We caught up with Samuel Adams (SA) brewing team Eryn Bottens (based in Boston), Adam Brandt (based in Cincinnati), and Urban Artifact (UA) brewer Brett Kollman Baker about how this collaboration came to be and the ties to our hometowns.
Q: Tell us about Urban Artifact.
A (Brett, UA): We are a 100% sour brewery. Our sours are fermented with yeast and bacteria that is caught locally. We set up jars to catch yeast and bacteria and then run what we catch through lab testing, and we use the most interesting ones for our beers.
Q: How did this collaboration come to be?
A (Brett, UA): We had a chance meeting – a few brewers from Sam Adams happened to come through one evening while I was here working late with a couple other people on the team. We struck up a conversation, had some beers, and we’ve been meeting up about once a month for beers ever since.
It’s been great to be able to pick the brains of brewers that have been around since the beginning. The breadth of knowledge Sam Adams has is amazing - and even though we brew on two completely different scales, we have similar values and cherish the same things about craft beer.
A (Adam, SA): Yeah – it really grew out of a friendship. We really admire what the Urban Artifact team is doing in the Cincinnati community and thought it would be a lot of fun to do a project with them. We also focus a lot on sours as we age the majority of our Kosmic Mother Funk (KMF) here, so we each learned a lot from one another through this collaboration.
Q: What inspired the flavor profile of the beer?
A (Eryn, SA): Urban Artifact brews a lot of fruit forward beers, and we wanted to do something that had a nod to the local community, and with the Paw Paw fruit being native to Ohio it was a perfect fit. And of course, the New England IPA style is a nod to our Boston roots.
A (Brett, UA): We’ve been wanting to brew a New England IPA for a while now, so this was a good opportunity for both of us to get together, take our shared knowledge and knock it out of the park with a style that is relatively new. This beer is super juicy with bright tropical fruit notes. It’s full bodied, and is extremely flavorful without the harsh bitterness you usually get from an IPA.
Q: What’s the story behind the name?
A (Brett, UA): At Urban Artifact, we like to name our beers after some sort of artifact rather it be physical, scientific, or cultural. We dove into the history of the Paw Paw fruit and what we found was that the Paw Paw flower looks like the tricorne hat, which was worn during the Revolutionary War.
Q: Is there anything unique about the brewing process for this beer?
A (Eryn, SA): We are brewing half of the wort at Urban Artifact, and then the other half at our Cincinnati brewery and then bringing them together for fermentation at our brewery. This will get the PH level we wanted naturally – brewing half of the wort at Urban Artifact helps with the souring.
A (Brett, UA): This is the first collaboration I’ve worked on that is also a logistical collaboration as well, which has been interesting. Usually one of the collaborating teams show up at the other brewery, drink a bunch of beers, and go home feeling good. This is good because we both are doing the work and having a hand in making the beer come to life, which will feel more rewarding in the end.
Want to try Tricorne? This limited release beer will only be available at Oktoberfest Zinzinnati, at Urban Artifact, and on draft at limited accounts in the tri-state area. Profits from this beer will go to the Ohio Craft Brewers Association.