Water is often overshadowed as one of beer’s key ingredients, but Mountain Culture Beer Co founder DJ McCready says it requires careful attention to properly execute a New England IPA.

McCready told the Drinks Adventures podcast that the reverse osmosis kit he installed at the company’s brewery was particularly crucial in recipe development for his NEIPA, Cult Juice.

“We’ve put in the reverse osmosis kit, because I really wanted to expand my horizons as a brewer, and start focusing on the main ingredient in beer, which is water,” he says.

“We can basically take our water and start from a neutral base, stripping absolutely everything out of it. Then we can add the minerality into it that we want.”

McCready says his travels throughout the USA convinced him that crafting a hazy IPA starts with the right water profile.

“If you get the water profile right and the hopping regime right, you’re pretty much going to have a winner, no matter what,” he says.

“If it stays really hazy and there’s a lot of biotransformation in the beer, or if it does drop out and go clear, either way, you know you’re going to be left with something that, when you’re drinking it, it’s like, ‘Well this is awesome’.

“At the end of the day, I guess that’s all you could really hope. I can’t really take credit if people like our New England IPAs, because I’ve had a lot of help from folks overseas with putting those recipes together.”

Cult Juice NEIPA has proven a taproom favourite at the Blue Mountains brewery since it opened last year.

To date, there has only been a single 1000-can packaging run of the beer, and McCready says distribution of all its products is likely to remain limited.

“Unfortunately, with our size right now, I’m pretty limited to how much I can get out there,” he told the podcast.

“If somebody’s coming to the brewery, I want to make sure that they can get the cans.”

Listen to the full interview with DJ McCready on the Drinks Adventures podcast here:


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