A new beer release from Insight Brewing launches Wednesday (5/3) and it will set the bar high for new and creative offerings from Minnesota brewers this summer. Crazy Aunt, a gin and tonic-style ale, shows off flavors similar to a cocktail, a departure from the typical wheat-centric patio beers of summers past.
Insight’s Ilan Klages-Mundt has only recently realized his fondness for the cocktail that inspired the newest beer in their lineup. “I had my first gin and tonic in June of last year. Now it’s one of my favorite cocktails,” he said while joking about how long it had taken to try one. When asked about the difficulty of creating such a recipe, “I like a good challenge and this was a challenge.” It took seven test batches to get it right.
Crazy Aunt’s gin and tonic-like flavors come from similar ingredients as the cocktail: juniper, lime juice, coriander and tonic water.
The 16 oz can pours a pale, straw-like hue with a witbier-like opaqueness underneath a fluffy white head. The aroma is citrus and spice, reminiscent of a lime shandy. Bright lime and mild acidity dominate the first sip and quickly transition into lemon, subtle pineyness and grapefruit pith. The unique quinine bitterness of tonic scrubs your palate clean and leaves little lingering aftertaste. At 6% ABV, alcohol contributes to its full flavor without the slightest hint of warmth.
Uniquely, Insight will also provide four cocktail recipes using Crazy Aunt as an ingredient and will host a competition later this summer for bartenders to submit their own recipes.
In addition to 4-packs, Crazy Aunt will be served on draught in the taproom and will be distributed in half and sixth barrel kegs from May through August.
No word on whose aunt may have been the inspiration for the name.