The idea of collaborating with our friends at the Bronx Brewery on a small-batch, craft ale had been brewing for some time, and now we’re thrilled to announce that that dream is a reality. A hoppy, tropical, golden reality.
Why a mango IPA? Well, as you may know, FreshDirect is the exclusive online retailer of Dr. Savani’s Indian mangoes, and when these juicy stone fruits came back in season last summer, the inspiration hit our alcohol team with the force of a runaway freight train carrying a cargo of sweet amber nectar: A summery beer using our favorite peak-season produce! When we pitched the idea to the Brewery, they were on board right away.
On June 12, we headed up to the Bronx to “help” brew the beer. If you’ve never been to the Bronx Brewery, it’s well worth a trip (their taproom is open from 3 PM on weekdays and from noon on the weekend). Located in the industrial neighborhood of Mott Haven, the Bronx Brewery building has had many past lives, including being an iron works showroom, a lace garment manufacturer, and a vending machine warehouse. These days, the smell of brewing barley that hits you as soon as you walk in leaves no doubt as to its latest incarnation.
Our lead brewer, Cameron Frigon, instructed us to take it in turns to empty bags of malted barley into the mill, which we did as 90’s rock like Nirvana and Spin Doctors played loudly over the speaker system. Then, lots of small-batch brewery magic happened involving pipes, grist cases, three different varieties of hops and a boil. After that, we waited.
A week later, fermentation was complete and 70 pounds of lusciously ripe Indian mangoes were added to the tank. Then we waited some more.
Another week passed and we headed back to the brewery for canning day. We watched, spellbound, as the taps were turned on and metal cans were carried down a small conveyor belt, stopping only briefly to be filled with Mango Queen IPA five cans at a time. Our cofounder, David, stood at the end of the conveyor and packed and stacked the first few crates.
But of course, the highlight of the day was finally getting to taste the beer! It is not an overstatement to say that our Queen is most definitely royal and exceeded our already high expectations. Refreshingly crisp with aromas of sweet mango and citrus, this hazy IPA is one of a kind. As a limited run of just 200 cases, our Queen won’t be around long—so order some today!
Buy Mango Queen IPA here.