The inaugural IPA Day was in 2011, taking full advantage of social media, with the hashtag #IPAday trending all over the world, aiming to make IPA Day a 24 hour viral worldwide celebration of England’s finest beer export, India Pale Ale.
What is India Pale Ale?
The simplest answer is IPA is a type of beer, in the same way that all ales and lagers fall in to the beer camp, each with their own characteristics.
Pale Ale (also known as Bitter) is a type of beer that is made using a malt (barley) firing process that results in a paler colour. In the 18th and 19th centuries when India was part of the British Empire, beer was exported to India on a journey that could take anything up to 3 months. Although there is various stories of how IPA came about, the most common states that beers would not last the journey to India, so George Hodgson of the Bow Brewery developed a pale ale with a high alcohol and hop content, which gave the ale a longer life to easily last the long voyage to the other side of the world. And so, pale ales that were exported to India from Britain with this higher ABV and hop content were known as India Pale Ales.
Today, IPA is characterised by this greater hop content and an ABV of anywhere between 4.0% and 6.5%.
How Can I Celebrate IPA Day 2014?
The joy of IPA Day is that it is designed as a social celebration, with an aim for IPA lovers to connect worldwide in the appreciation of India Pale Ale. So it’s up to you how you choose to celebrate, but it’s a great idea to check your local pubs to see if they have got anything planned, and if they haven’t, you had better suggest something!
Take inspiration from the 2nd Newark CAMRA IPA Trail, which appropriately starts on International Beer Day on Friday 1st August, and runs all the way through to Sunday 10th August so you can spread out your IPA drinking and not muddle your palate. Hosted by the cask beer exclusive Just Beer Micropub in Newark, follow the trail of varied IPAs to fill out your collectors card and get entered in to a prize draw!
— Stuart Clift (@StuartClift) August 3, 2013
This year there is a similar event organised by Newark’s neighbouring Nottingham CAMRA running from Saturday 23rd August until Monday 1st September in pubs across the area. IPA Day is growing, so why not take the idea of the IPA Trail and pioneer it in your local area?
Written by James Seber