Beer to the Rescue: Hildegard IIIPA

Benchmark Brewing Company goes REALLY big for charity

  • Image by Rachael Akin

Benchmark Brewing Co.

6190 Fairmount Avenue, Suite G, Grantville

Past Event

Beer to the Rescue Release Party

  • Saturday, January 31, 2015, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Benchmark Brewing Co., 6190 Fairmount Avenue, Suite G, San Diego
  • Free - $10

Last week, I shared news of Beer to the Rescue, a year-long campaign raising funds for the Lupus Foundation of Southern California (LFSC) via sales of specialty beers from local brewing companies. The first of the nearly two-dozen beers will be Benchmark Hildegard IIIPA, a triple India pale ale that’s monstrous in its hop character and alcohol-by-volume (ABV). Coming in at a whopping 13.5% ABV, it’s a departure for Benchmark Brewing Company, which has made a name for itself behind lower-alcohol beers, leading some to believe them incapable of upping the booziness. This brawny brew deliciously dispels that myth.

Packed with Citra hops to the point where owners Matt and Rachael Akin refer to it as a “Citra bomb,” it gives off big orange and lemon aromas, and a bright juiciness on the tongue. As one would expect from a brew this big, alcohol warmth is present, but the beer remains crisp with well over 100 IBUs (referring to the international bittering unit scale used to measure beers’ bitterness) from a wealth of Warrior hops added in the boil kettle helping to more sharply hone its finish.

Hildegard is named after a twelfth-century Benedictine abbess who became famous as a philosopher, visionary, writer, composer, botanist, and healer. It’s that last one, as well as the fact she is credited with popularizing the use of hops as a preservative in beer, that makes this beer ideally suited for assisting a charity organization devoted to aiding those suffering from lupus.

Hildegard IIIPA will debut as part of a special release party starting at 1 p.m. on Saturday, January 31 at Benchmark’s tasting room (6190 Fairmount Avenue, Grantville). The non-ticketed event will be a fundraiser for LFSC (who will have representatives on-hand) and include a commemorative logo glass.

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