Drink This Beer: JailHouse Brewing Company Five-O
(cue Hawaii Five-O) theme….
No, not the new one. The old school, classic one. With Jack Ford. Anyway, I digress. The fine folks at Hampton, Georgia’s JailHouse Brewing Company has a brand new IPA out. Just in time for drinking season, we talked to owner and brewmaster Glenn Golden about it.
Tell us about Five-O. How did you develop this recipe?
Five-0 started as a name. It was perfect for our brand and we thought it would make a good tropical-like IPA. We also had some Galaxy hops contracted so we married the two components and created Five-O IPA. Recipe-wise we toyed with a few ideas and ultimately decided to let the hops do all the work. Just keep it simple but do it well was the best recipe.
This is a “tropical” IPA – how were you able to get the flavor without fruit adjuncts? Have you been playing around with different hop profiles?
We incorporated a few different hop combinations to arrive at what we thought was interesting and complex enough without being too varied. Fruit does have its place in beer but we didn’t want Five-0 to be driven by that aspect.
At 5.0%, this could be considered a “session.” What’s the challenge of getting a good, full-flavored beer with a lower abv? Or, in other words, how are you able to brew a low ABV IPA that doesn’t taste like hop water?
We agreed that it couldn’t be hop water. All the hops go in late in the process to keep bitterness levels down. We also use a couple of low alpha hops to keep that hop water effect at bay. Balance is the key to any beer in my opinion.
We’ve seen quite a few “tropical” IPAs locally – Creature’s Tropicalia, Reformation Oren, SweetWater Triple Tail – what makes Five-O stand out?
I think the balance Five-O has is its appeal. Good hop characteristics in a very drinkable beer. I think time will determine what makes it stand out. Does it hit all the points consumers look for in a “session” IPA? We think so.
How did the name and the design come about?
We are always toying with names that fit our brand. Five-O has a great ring to it and it makes sense. Being in the vein of a tropical-style IPA the packaging needed to portray that. Jim hit the nail on the head with the design. It’s bright, punchy and screams refreshing.
You initially had this on tap at the brewery only. What was the decision to can and distribute this one?
The feedback was amazing. People loved the beer and wanted to have access to it in the market. It’s the best way to learn what the consumer wants compared to our whims and musings.
Following up, what was behind the decision to add this to your year-round lineup?
We feel like Five-O fits our lineup of beers and provides a point of differentiation from what we’ve been brewing for the last 7 years. We love this beer and want to drink it all year long.
Where can we pick up some Five-O?
Most of the distribution is south of Atlanta. We aim to keep those outlets stocked as much as possible. We’ve had so much support in our market for this, and all of our beers, that the majority of production on Five-0 has been consumed by our hyper-local market.
What’s coming up next for JailHouse?
We’re doing a good bit of experimenting and have some fun things on the horizon. I think our path is proving to be a little different than the growth patterns we’re seeing in the market and I’m happy about that. We’re focusing on who and what we are which is a small town brewery. It’s a lot of fun.
Five-O is now currently out in bottle shops and on draft.