Podcast Episode 153: Grains of Wrath's Mike Hunsaker Strives for Quality that Fellow Brewers Respect

This Portland, Oregon-area brewer has always brewed like he has something to prove, building a reputation for tightly expressive West Coast IPAs as well as thoughtfully constructed lagers.

Jamie Bogner Sep 19, 2020

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Grains of Wrath’s Mike Hunsaker has never been afraid to work for his success, and that journey of working and learning has led him to brewing gigs from Virginia to Cleveland and Oregon. Today, as cofounder and head brewer at Grains of Wrath (Vancouver, Washington), he’s focused not just on commercial success, but also on making beers that his peers respect.

“I’m happy with making a little less money, but having more respect, as far as what we’re doing here and how we go about our business,” Hunsaker says.

In this episode, Hunsaker discusses both his approach to new-school West Coast IPAs and to lagers such as his Vienna, twice a GABF medal winner.

The conversation also covers:
- Tweaking the malt blend in IPAs based on the oil content of hops
- Regional variations in approaches to malt in IPA
- The impacts of Munich, Vienna, and Carablonde when blended in West Coast IPA
- Blending hops for maximum impact
- Hot- and cold-side hopping regimens
- Planning for hops creep and adjusting recipes and techniques
- With each new crop year, testing varieties for hops creep culprits
- Bittering lagers with low-alpha hops

And more.

This episode is brought to you by:

G&D
G&D Chillers: As the brewing industry’s premier choice for glycol chilling, G&D Chillers has set the standard on quality, service, and dedication to their customer’s craft. For 25 years G&D has led the way on innovative solutions that match their brewing customers immediate and future needs. With a wide selection of custom built chillers; G&D offers the Nano chiller, the perfect solution for Nano breweries all the way up to their larger capacity units like the Vertical Air Chiller, built for higher volume operations. Contact G&D Chillers today for your chiller sizing needs at 800.555.0973. Reach out online at Gdchillers.com

BSG
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Mountain Rose Herbs logo
This episode is brought to you by Mountain Rose Herbs, purveyors of the highest quality, organic herbs, spices, and teas. Whether you want to add depth to your next golden tripel with classic notes of cinnamon, pepper and clove, or artfully layer exotic, zesty grains of paradise into a perfect ale, adding botanicals to your brewing is an easy way to customize a delicious flavor profile. Mountain Rose Herbs has been providing organic herbs and spices to chefs, herbalists, and dedicated brewers for more than three decades. Learn more at mountainroseherbs.com and get 10% off of your first order with the code “craftbeer10”.

Yakima Valley Hops logo 200px Yakima Valley Hops is your hop source whether you are brewing 5 gallons or 5 barrels. Get all the hops you want, when you want them. We source the highest quality hops from the Yakima Valley and premium growing regions around the world so that you have access to the largest hop portfolio possible - even the hard to find varieties like Citra®, Nelson Sauvin, and Galaxy®. Homebrewers: YakimaValleyHops.com // Wholesale: SpotHops.com

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ABE Beverage Equipment provides complete brewing and packaging solutions worldwide. Whether you are just starting out or are looking to expand, ABE offers brewhouses, tanks, canning lines and more for small to medium sized brewers. ABE has equipped over one thousand breweries worldwide and has the best customer service in the industry. Call ABE Beverage Equipment at 402-475-BEER or visit ABEequipment.com to learn more. That’s ABEequipment.com for complete brewing and packaging solutions.

Jamie Bogner is the Cofounder and Editorial Director of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®. Email him at [email protected].

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