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Friday Drankin: Boiler Gold American Golden Ale

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I know we’re early in this series, but the news we received yesterday that Purdue now has its own beer was too good to pass up. That means we’re revisiting the first brewery we ever profiled in this series: People’s Brewing in Lafayette.

From the Lafayette Journal & Courier, photo credit to John Terhune.
John Terhune

Yes, you read that right: Purdue now has its own beer. Earlier this week People’s debuted Boiler Gold American Golden Ale and it is officially branded through Purdue University:

The beer he had at People’s brewing facilities on North Ninth Street in Lafayette. Plenty, in fact, to put in kegs to deliver 2,000 samples for the beer’s debut Friday at Indianapolis’ Monument Circle for the Circle Up Boiler Tailgate, an afternoon pep rally ahead of Saturday’s Purdue-Louisville football game at Lucas Oil Stadium.

And a run of 150 cases of Boiler Gold wasn’t due to Ross-Ade Stadium for another week, ahead of Purdue’s Sept. 8 game against Ohio. For starters, Boiler Gold will be sold only during Purdue games and in the 1869 Tap Room in the Purdue Memorial Union. Later, People’s will distribute six packs to retailers in Indiana and the Chicago area in time for the holidays.

There was one small detail: “Mitch Daniels wants some cans to show on the Circle,” Johnson said. “It’s going to happen.”

So yes, if you’re going to the Circle Up tailgate they will be available later this afternoon. This is a beer that is home grown too, according to the article:

Boiler Gold was born out of collaborations between Hoosier craft brewers – there are more than 130 in the state, according to the Indiana Brewers Guild – and Purdue’s Department of Food Sciences, which runs the Hops and Brewing Analysis Lab.

Johnson said that since People’s opened in 2009, the brewery has been tapping into Purdue expertise for everything from the feasibility of locally grown hops – generally a specialty of less humid climates in the Pacific Northwest – to marketing help from the Krannert School of Management.

Brian Farkas, head of Purdue’s food sciences, compared the relatively new Hops and Brewing Analysis Lab to the Purdue Wine and Grape Team, which has been putting university research in the hands of Indiana’s wine industry.

“That really is the benchmark for working collaboration between Purdue and the beverage industry, in this case,” Farkas said. “The wine grape program has been around 25 years or so, supporting the wine industry, offering workshops, doing analysis on soil quality on wine grapes and more. So we’re kind of modeling after that, offering support to the hops industry and the grain industry as it tries to come around, and to the craft breweries with analysis.”

It is not surprise that this is a home grown beer. Brewing has really taken off across the state of Indiana in the last five years, thus the impetus for this entire series. Indiana’s rich agricultural history even has the most basic elements of beer steeped in Purdue roots. Earlier this week David Kaminski e-mailed me about Crazy Horse Hops in Knightstown, Indiana. The CFO and COO (David’s brother) are both proud Purdue grads and they have been so successful as a start-up that everything they are producing has already been sold BEFORE it is even harvested.

So drink up, Boilers! We officially have our own beer this fall! I will definitely be on the hunt for some.