It all began when Gravity's Diego Ganoza and a Chicago executive with Ransom Old Tom Gin met at The Broken Shaker for a few beers. Ganoza purchased a few gin barrels from him and held them in storage. After calling Cigar City's Joey Redner, the conversation shifted to Gravity's head brewer, Roberto Tejon, doing an internship at Cigar City.
Tejon enthusiastically took a trip to the Cigar City Brewpub on July 5 where he worked with lead brewer Tim Ogden. They talked about doing a saison or black IPA, but they ended up running with a single malt, single hopped double IPA and they're going to age it in gin barrels that Ganoza acquired from Ransom.
Using galaxy hops (an Australian variety) to produce a fruity/citrusy aroma, two-row malt and aged with passion fruit and mango, then aged again in the gin barrels, the result is "Gin and Juice." The combo doses of fruit and hops will make it a "juicy-type" beer with a big mouth-feel, says Ganoza. And as you might have guessed, the name was inspired by hip-hop.
The beer is first aged for 45 days, then transferred to the gin barrels for approximately another three months. After that, expect to see it on tap at the Cigar City Brewpub.
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Hopefully, this could be one of several more collaborations with Gravity and Cigar City, says Ganoza.
For Gravity, the internship was a big step towards opening up a brewery in Wynwood as it helped Tejon scale-up his recipes for mass production.
No word yet on Gravity's official opening date, but Ganoza says they are "pushing crazy" for a location. Once that happens, it will be great news for the Miami beer scene.