Beer lovers everywhere have experienced the internal debate on whether or not to settle for ordering a traditional lager or coughing up the extra change to get a craft brew. A Maryland start-up has created a solution that allows beer enthusiasts to get the best of both worlds. Hop Theory made a teabag that consumers drop in their beer to improve their normal lager or enhance the craft beer of choice. Two minutes after being dropped in a pint, consumers have an entirely different beverage.
The Hop Theory sachet contains cascade hops, fruit peels, coriander seed and natural spices. The biodegradable bag dissolves within two minutes and has the ability to infuse up to four beers. Even better, each beer teabag only has up to five calories. Hop Theory urges people to use the bags in whatever beer they please, whether it be craft, gluten-free, or alcohol-free. Bobby Gattuso, founder of the company, says that “Hop Theory is here to add customization to the beer industry.”
However, craft breweries have doubts in the idea that a simple sachet can transform a regular beer to have craft quality. Emily Williamson of Cheddar Ales thinks that the claim that the Hop Theory bags can make a craft beer in two minutes is misleading. Brewing a craft beer takes time and expertise. The boiling process is what causes the brew to encapsulate the unique flavors and aromas of the ingredients added. The added “beerbag” might only give consumers a slight taste of the flavor they were striving for. However, if it helps consumers avoid dropping extra money on a beer, then they might not be turned off by the so-called dull taste.
Each sachet comes individually package for one time use. Consumers can easily bring the bags with them to the bar or any outing that they desire. The first flavor includes orange peel, but the company hopes to introduce raspberry, pumpkin, double IPA and peach by the end of the year. The bags are currently patent pending and the first bags to be delivered in July. Gattuso explains that “for the first time ever, the consumer becomes the brew master,” and encourages consumers to experiment with their beer’s taste.