The self-appointed beer nut could talk your ear off about long-lost styles, esoteric tasting notes, IBUs and SRMs. What you likely won’t hear them talk about is the environmental impact of craft beer production — a process that uses, among other things, an enormous amount of water. All things considered, it’s somewhere in the ballpark of 20 gallons of water for every 12-ounce can of beer — sometimes less, sometimes more, but who’s really keeping track?
That’s why Patagonia — yes, the same gear brand dedicated to “[reversing] the steep decline in the overall environmental health of our planet” (as per the brand’s mission statement) — released Long Root Ale, produced in collaboration with Hopworks Urban Brewery in Portland, Oregon. It’s the latest product from Patagonia Provisions, the food-and-drink-focused sect of Patagonia, founded in 2012.
Described as a pale ale, Long Root Ale is brewed with organic two-row barley, organic yeast and organic Chinook, Mosaic and Crystal hops — and Kernza, a wheat substitute developed by the Land Institute in Kansas that can thrive without tilling or pesticides, and which needs far less water to grow than conventional wheat. The real kicker? It’s delicious. Cheers to that.