The highly anticipated release is finally here!
We are so excited to share our new, year-round beer! Now, without any further delay, allow us to introduce the newest member of the sunshine family, Hazy Rays.
Setting the Stage
The year is 2014. The term “New England IPA” had not yet been coined. Sip of Sunshine is kegged for the first time down at Two Roads Brewery in Connecticut. It is described as “fresh and hazy” making it one of the first hazy beers in the soon to be expansive Lawson’s Finest portfolio.
A New Era
Back in the day, a beer, like Sip of Sunshine, was considered hazy based on the high amount of hops used in dry hopping and serving the beer fresh and unfiltered. In recent years, brewers have taken hazy in a different direction. Now, extreme amounts of hops are used in the dry hopping process which is moved forward to right after fermentation begins. This allows biotransformation to occur.
The Creation of Hazy Rays
Building a Concept
First, we decided that we needed to add a low ABV hazy to our year round lineup. As a team, we discussed our desired flavors, aromas, and mouthfeel for a Lawson’s Finest hazy beer. Next (this is the fun part), we conducted research by tasting other hazy beers. This helped us narrow in on the things we wanted in our beer and the things that we did not.
Brewing Up a Haze
The next stage in the process was brewing a test batch on our 1bbl system. By our 5th, 1bbl pilot batch, we were ready to scale up to the 7bbl system at our Warren brewery. With each batch, we refined the recipe and tweaked the hop build until, finally, it matched the concept. With the recipe perfected, it was off to Two Roads Brewery in Connecticut for the final scale up and first canning of Hazy Rays!
Hazy Rays fits right into the sunshine family with its tropical, fruit forward, juicy character with just a little bit of sweetness on the finish. Overall, it has a prominent, robust, fruity hop aroma all well being balanced and maintaining a clean profile.