Leinenkugel’s Collaboration Lager, a German-style amber lager, is the second collaboration between Leinenkugel’s and Hofbräu, which has been brewing in Munich since 1589. It will line up next to Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest as a fall seasonal offering.
“Between Leinenkugel’s and Hofbräu Munich, we’ve got 550 years of brewing tradition, and we think people are going to love our Collaboration Lager,” says Dick Leinenkugel.
The two breweries first teamed up in 2017 to create a beer commemorating Leinenkugel’s’ 150th anniversary. This year, they recreated the recipe – with a few tweaks – to adhere to the spirit of Reinheitsgebot, the famed German purity law that states beers can only be made with malt, hops, water and yeast.
Using four types of hops – Mt. Hood, Centennial, Steiner Experimental Hop and Mosaic – Collaboration Lager is more hop forward than traditional German beers, blending an American trend with imported German malt. It checks in at 5.4% alcohol by volume and 26 IBUs.
“Collaboration Lager uses German malts and all-American hops to give it a really nice, balanced characteristic with just a little bit of hop that shines through the beer at the end. It’s got that great Märzen-style color,” Dick Leinenkugel says.
For Hofbräu, the 2017 collaboration was the first in its 430-year history, says Steve Ksycki, director of import sales and marketing for Hofbräuhaus of America.
“The selling point was when management staff and brewers from Munich came over and spent some time in Chippewa Falls. It’s one of those things where it was the actual shaking of hands and sharing of beers that brought the two breweries together,” he says.
With the pandemic restricting travel, however, this year’s collaboration was conceived over Zoom.
The Collaboration Lager is now available in package and draft for a limited-time.