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Firestone Walker XPA

Firestone Walker Releases XPA

Firestone Walker has introduced the Firestone XPA as the first of its three seasonal offerings for 2024. The Firestone XPA is an extra pale ale crafted with Southern Hemisphere hops and a California-style touch.

According to Brewmaster Matt Brynildson, XPA is a popular craft beer style in Australia, and the brewery aims to promote it in the U.S. He expressed the beer’s appeal, citing its combination of the qualities found in a good pale ale with a moderate alcohol by volume (ABV), making it highly drinkable. Brynildson shared that the inspiration for Firestone XPA came from their travels to hop farms in Australia and New Zealand.

The Firestone XPA, with a 5% ABV, is being distributed in can (12-oz six packs) and limited draft formats throughout the winter and into the spring season until June. Notably, an early batch of Firestone XPA received a Bronze Medal at the 2023 Great American Beer Festival in the International Pale Ale category.

Built around New Zealand’s Nelson hop, known for its grapefruit and tropical Sauvignon Blanc qualities, the beer also incorporates classic Mosaic hops. The brewery emphasizes its connection to California pale ales, reflecting its heritage as a brewer in the state.

Brynildson described the joy the production team experienced in creating this beer, emphasizing their dedication to fine-tuning test batches to achieve the desired qualities. The goal was to highlight the punchy tropical characteristics of the Nelson hop, with the addition of Mosaic enhancing the fruit flavors.

Firestone Walker Brand Director Hannah Barnett sees potential for XPA to gain popularity in the U.S., envisioning it as a potential fixture in the American pale ale landscape. She expressed the brewery’s desire to contribute to making that happen.