Audacity Brew House brought back a crowd favorite this weekend when they launched the permanent return of Boss Raptor, an unfiltered IPA featuring five different styles of hops from four continents. The once experimental beer will now be a mainstay available on-tap at the brewery as well as distributed throughout DFW.
The new core beer is a dry, hoppy American-style IPA with bright aromas of lemon zest, grapefruit and cedar. Dry-hopped with a satisfying bitterness, it has a good body but isn’t heavy like some IPAs. It’s got a good caramel malt backbone and would pair well with sweet and spicy barbecue or a classic roasted chicken.
In the past, Boss Raptor had been Audacity’s vehicle for experimentation using various combinations of hops and yeast, similar to Martin House’s model of single-hopped IPAs. Audacity was in the habit of splitting up their run to feature partner IPAs, each with a different twist, and naming them accordingly. For instance, their Maverick and Goose IPAs are the same formulation, but with different hops. But as demand for their core beers grew, space came at a premium. Eventually they lacked the tank space to play around, and Boss Raptor went away for more than a year and half.
Even though the formulation was never the same, demand for Boss Raptor continued during its absence.
“People kept asking for it,” owner Scott Lindsey says. “But how do you know you want a Boss Raptor? It was different every time; it wasn’t a set beer.”
Lindsey worked with Doug Smith, co-owner and Brewmaster to formulate the fan favorite into a mainstay. “We knew if it was going to come back,” he says, “it needed to come back as [officially] Boss Raptor.”
That doesn’t mean they’ll stop experimenting. Even though Boss Raptor will join the ranks of their core beers, they’ll continue peeling off and infusing a few kegs of the dry IPA to feature exclusively in the taproom, and the recipe for Boss Raptor reflects that.
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“We wanted something that could be dry but at the same time a little bit fruity so we could continue to play with it – not by changing the hops or changing the yeast or anything like we used to, but by changing the adjunct," Lindsey says.
They’re pouring the Mango Boss Raptor in the tap room currently; the mango is added during secondary fermentation, as opposed to the boil. This lends to a fragrant aroma of tropical fruit without the cloying, perfumey mouthfeel that’s sometimes present in fruity beers. It also compliments the IPA’s slight floral flavors; notes of lemon zest and grapefruit sing out on the finish. Tasting them side by side is a wonderful experience.
Boss Raptor might be back as a mainstay, but the mango edition will not. Future plans for featured infusions run the gamut.
“I want to do pineapple, I want to raspberry ... some of them might even be mint,” Lindsey says. “It goes so well with fruits, but we’re thinking hatch chilies, maybe.”