Aqua Mane India Pale Ale, a beer brewed with all New Zealand hops and named after the Memphis Grizzlies’ Steven Adams, is being released in cans by Ghost River Brewing Co.
Six packs of Aqua Mane IPA are being released to Ghost River’s distributor this week and should be available in Shelby County Kroger stores within 10 days, said Ghost River owner Bob Keskey.
The beer will start off as a seasonal release, but could become a year-round offering.
Aqua Mane IPA weighs in at 6.9% ABV and features “all New Zealand hops, hints of stone fruits and blackberries.”
Aqua Mane has been available on draft for about six weeks in Ghost River’s two taprooms, and in other bars for about four weeks. The beer’s popularity in Ghost River’s taprooms, as well as the pending start of the NBA Playoffs, prompted Ghost River to package the beer in cans.
Aqua Mane’s recipe
Mark Crum, Ghost River’s head brewer, said the beer started out as darker beer in a small-batch experiment at Ghost River’s Beale Street brew house, and has evolved to the recipe being brewed and canned now in the brewery’s Main Street facility.
“It’s kind of turned into a classic IPA malt bill now where it lets the hops do their work. It’s pretty much straight base malt and has a little bit of wheat in it. It has Baird’s medium carastan in it for just a little bit of flavor and color,” Crum said.
The beer was brewed with Motueka hops and Pacific Gem hops.
“I don’t think there’s a lot of New Zealand hops being used in the Memphis brewing scene right now. I think their hops are a little more earthy … as opposed to some of the tropical notes you get out of a lot of the classic American hops,” Crum said.
“You know how everyone is kind of looking for that new beer and something different. It gives them something a little different that maybe they haven’t had before.”
Beer inspired by Steven Adams
Adams, who was born and raised in New Zealand, is often called Aqua Mane by Grizzlies fans due to his rough resemblance to actor Jason Momoa, who plays the superhero Aquaman in the DC films. Adams, who’s been dealing with a knee injury, hasn’t played since Jan. 23.
During his rehab, Adams has stopped in for a beer at Ghost River’s Beale Street taproom, even trying his namesake brew.
“And he liked it,” Crum added.