Hard rock and a cold beer.
This classic combination has been taken a step further with the sudden influx of craft beers. Microbreweries are now naming their ales after rock stars’ biggest hits and even collaborating with the musicians themselves.
Most prominently, the Delaware-based Dogfish Head Craft Brewery has taken to honoring musical milestones for artists, like hard rock The Grateful Dead and grungy Pearl Jam, with their specialty brews.
However, any of these hard rock and metal inspired hops can surely fuel all of your head banging needs.
So crack open a cold one, and see which brews have been inspired by musicians.
21st Amendment Brewery’s “Back in Black”
AC/DC once said, “If you wanna rock hard, you need the right beer.”
Perhaps the right beer is 21st Amendment’s “Back in Black,” a hoppy, rich and obviously, black IPA with a smooth, mellow finish. Although the name is a clear reference to the legendary Aussie rock band’s album of the same title, the brewery was actually inspired by Paul Revere and his historic midnight ride, according to their website.
ABV: 6.8 %
Heavy Seas’ “Smoke on the Water” porterHeavy Seas
“Deep Purple” smoke wraps around a skull and cross bones with some sheet music from “Smoke on the Water” placed next to it on the label.
Do you see where I’m going with this?
Heavy Seas’ “Smoke on the Water” pays tribute to the rock band with its smoked porter that has been known for its chocolate, soy sauce and mildly smoky tasting notes.
ABV: 8 %
Abita Brewery’s “Purple Haze”
Purple because it’s infused with raspberries, hazy because it’s unfiltered, Abita Brewery’s “Purple Haze” is a sweet wheat ale named after Jimi Hendrix’s song of the same name. The lager pairs well with summery salads, chocolate-based treats, or consider enjoying it alone as the dessert.
Cambridge Brewing Company’s “Sgt. Pepper”Cambridge Brewing Company
Cambridge Brewing Company’s psychedelic beer is both a reference to the brewer’s use of four different kinds of peppercorns and the iconic 1967 Beatles’ album, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.” According to their website, Sgt. Pepper “harmonizes with spicy hops while the malted rye and Belgian yeast holds down the backbeat.”
Robinsons Brewery’s “The Trooper”Robinsons Brewery’s
Named after Iron Maiden’s 1983 single, “The Trooper” was co-designed by the English heavy metal band. It’s a golden ale with some malt flavors and subtle citrus tasting notes. According to their website, vocalist Bruce Dickinson, a true beer enthusiast, “has developed a beer which has true depth of character.”
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s “Faithfull Ale”Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Released in celebration of Pearl Jam’s 20th anniversary of their debut album, “Ten,” Dogfish Head’s pays tribute to the grunge band with a beer hopped with 20 IBUs (a measure of bitterness) and includes 10 black currants. The Belgian-style golden ale references the band’s 1998 song, “Faithfull,” and prominently displays the band’s name with the word “Twenty” on the label.
Martin House Brewing Co.’s “Rubberneck Red”
When making plans for their grand opening party, Martin House Brewing Co. looked into having The Toadies play, but the band’s schedule was full and the gig never happened. Apparently, all they had to do was name a beer for the rock band, and they would get their wish.
In celebration of the 20th anniversary of The Toadies’ album, “Rubberneck,” the brewing company devised an easy-drinking red ale with a balance of caramel malts and citrus hops, giving it a tropical fruit and piney flavor.
Terrapin Brewery’s “So Fresh and So Green, Green Ale”Terrapin Brewery
Georgia-based Terrapin Brewery describes their “So Fresh and So Green, Green Ale” as a “farm-to-glass” type of beer. The brewery’s fresh ingredients are undoubtedly inspired from fellow state natives, Outkast’s song “So Fresh, So Clean.” It’s a very hoppy IPA with a floral and grassy sweetness.
Mustang Brewing Company’s MMMHops IPAMustang Brewing Company
With both the band and the brewery hailing from Oklahama, it’s no wonder Mustang Brewing Company’s “MMMHops IPA” plays off the Hanson brothers’ 1997 hit, “MMMBop.” But the golden-orange IPA isn’t as hoppy as the name would suggest. It’s sweet and light-bodied with notes of caramel, pine and citrus.
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s “American Beauty”Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Dogfish Head collaborated with The Grateful Dead fans to find one special ingredient that would best represent the band and the beer, “American Beauty.” Out of 1,500 suggestions, granola turned out to be the ingredient of choice, creating “a sweet and toasty complement to the barley and all-American hops,” according to their website.
The band’s 50th anniversary and last show ever in July 2015 will be the perfect reason to break this out.