How Ballistic Banzai Charge came to be
Our very first beer idea was the idea for Ballistic Banzai Charge. We found Asian style beers that specifically use rice in mixture to have a light and almost 'fluffy' mouthfeel but with enough dense natural sugars to create stronger ABV beers.
At the moment of coming up with a recipe for then called 'Super Happy Banzai Charge' we discovered Sorachi Ace. A Japanese native hop that has a very potent lemony taste and smell. We kept the hop usage low however to help amplify the flavours. Ballistic Banzai Charge quickly became more complicated than anticipated and the flavours used were a balancing act. Lychee is a fan favourite of the Fox One team but these little fruits have a unique but very mellow taste and a small amount of fruity flesh. We use fresh fruit in all of our beers and Lychee can drop in and out of season unexpectedly, luckily we found perfect pink Lychee just in time. Using Wasabi was a complex issue also. easy to come by but a very strong flavour, it took us many many attempts to and Wasabi for it to compliment and not overpower the beer.
Making Pale Ale pink
Using natural ingredients, we wanted to match our beer to a Japanese sunset with a iridescence blend of pale orange and lush pink hues. We used cherry blossom and a small amount of beet powder. This mixture was added very carefully for two reasons. One to not affect the now perfected beer and two, because too much would make this beer a deep red. This was easy to gain control of when testing but in a large fermentor... was definitely another story.
One other issue we encountered was the sugars and acidity of the beer, this is what caused us to delay our release twice! With the rice, fruit and syrups added, the yeast used had a feast and when taking gravity readings we were hitting 8-10% which was definitely higher than our target, the wasabi used we found also caused our yeast to produce a low amount of carbon dioxide causing a more traditional semi-carbonated brew. To combat these issues we added more yeast compared to other beers we create to create many bubbles that bring out the fruit flavours on the tongue.