One of the most special parts of the brewing industry is the enormous degree of collaboration. Sometimes, that collaboration goes a step further to benefit a good cause. Even cooler is when we get to be a part of it.
Earlier this year, we were fortunate to be selected as one of 80ish breweries in the country to be a part of this year’s Ales for ALS program. So how does the program work? In short, Loftus Ranches, one of the longest running hop farms in Yakima Valley, provides a proprietary blend of hops, free of charge, to all participating breweries. The participating breweries create a beer of whatever style they please using this hop blend, donating $1 from every pint sold to benefit the ALS Therapy Development Institute, the world’s leader in ALS research.
Your familiarity with ALS was most likely broadened due to the insane virality of the “ALS Ice Bucket Challenge”, which dominated many social media feeds last summer. If you’re not familiar with ALS, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that leads to paralysis due to the death of motor neurons in the spinal cord and brain. There is no known cure for the disease, and the average person survives only two to five years following diagnosis. About 5,000 people in the US are diagnosed with ALS each year.
Last year, one of those 5,000 diagnoses was our longtime fraternity advisor and mentor, Bob Dax. The Donut Dash, Carnegie Mellon’s largest student-organized philanthropy event, became an ALS fundraiser immediately following Bob’s diagnosis, raising over $100,000 for ALS research during last year’s event. Bob is still fighting his battle with ALS, and although we certainly won’t be able to make as large a contribution as Donut Dash has, we’re incredibly grateful for the opportunity to help in any way we can.
All of this being said, we’re excited to announce the release of Lou, a beer made in partnership with the nationwide Ales for ALS program. With a hop blend featuring Equinox, Mosaic, and five other experimental hop varietals, we knew immediately what we had to do: a big, dank, and hazy Double IPA. Clocking in at 8% ABV, Lou is a symphony of lychee, pineapple, mangoes, peaches, grapefruit, and grass – a tropical fruit salad, if you will.
From now until we run out, we will be donating $1 from every pint (plus $0.50/taster, $2/750mL, and $3/2L) to ALS TDI. Join in and drink for a good cause.
A special thanks to Jena McEwen, Jeff Mich, Bob Dax, Neil & Suzanne Alexander, Loftus Ranches, Hopunion, Ben Eagle & ALSTDI, Donut Dash, and LiveLikeLou for your continued support, stories, and fight against ALS.