Different New Year’s bubbles from breweries in California and beyond

Many people turn to Champagne to celebrate New Year’s Eve, but if you’re a beer lover, there’s no need to abandon your favored beverage. There are plenty of bubbly beers that are ideal for celebrating the start of 2021 — and some don’t even contain alcohol.
Brut IPA: This IPA variation was created a few years ago by then-brewmaster Kim Sturdavant at San Francisco’s Social Kitchen & Brewery. His original offering was called Hop Champagne Extra Brut IPA, because he thought it would “be cool if I could make it as Champagne-like as possible.” Brut IPAs are not sweet, and they share a dry finish, rather like champagne. The new sub-style took off like a rocket. And while the buzz has since calmed a bit, you can still find Brut IPAs on stores shelves, including Anderson Valley’s Brut Extra IPA, Kona Brewing’s Hibiscus Brut IPA and Ommegang’s Brut IPA.
Sparkling Ale: Coopers Sparkling Ale is an unusual type of beer created in Australia in 1862 by Thomas Cooper, who was making a tonic for his wife. The brew is bottle conditioned and made in a process similar to méthode champenoise, but without removing the yeast, which in Champagne-making is known as disgorgement. This brewing process creates a bitter pale ale with a bubbly, sparkling mouthfeel.
Bière de Champagne: Several Belgian brewers have begun creating new beers in recent years using a secondary fermentation. They’re known generally as bière de Champagne or sometimes bière brut. The Champagne-like brewing process makes them effervescent, refreshing and delicious. Belgiuim’s Bosteels created one of the first, known as DeuS or Brut des Flandres, which is aged in the Champagne region of France.
Tiny Bubbles: Although it’s more of a German-style Gose, Lost Abbey’s Tiny Bubbles give it a Champagne-like mouthfeel. Tiny Bubbles is a lightly sour beer brewed with Brettanomyces and sea salt, and available as Original Brut Ale, Key Lime Brut Ale and Orange Guava Brut Ale at lostabbey.com.
Campbell’s Surreal Brewing has just collected some impressive awards for its lineup of non-alcoholic beer. (Surreal Brewing) 
Non-alcoholic IPAs: If you prefer to abstain on New Year’s Eve, here’s good news. Non-alcoholic beers or N/As have improved significantly in recent years. Campbell’s Surreal Brewing, which opened in 2018 with a line-up of exclusively non-alcoholic beers, recently won multiple awards for their efforts, including a gold medal at the 2020 International Beer Challenge for its 17 Mile Porter, along with silver medals for its Juicy Mavs Hazy IPA and Creatives IPA. And their flagship Chandelier Red IPA earned a bronze at the 2020 World Beer Awards.
Another new one to try is Lagunitas IPNA, a non-alcoholic IPA that’s dry-hopped with Mosaic and Citra hop varieties and tastes like a real IPA should, full-bodied with great hop aromas and flavors, but almost no alcohol.Related Articles

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Perhaps the best N/A I’ve tasted recently is Brooklyn Brewing’s Special Effects Hoppy Amber. Up until now, it was only available in Europe and New York, but the brewery recently announced it will be distributing both Special Effects Hoppy Amber and a new Special Effects IPA throughout the U.S. in January.
Contact Jay R. Brooks at BrooksOnBeer@gmail.com.
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