Lucky Envelope Brewing collaboration project will be released in Japan


Here is a press release about a cool collaboration that involves Seattle’s Lucky Envelope Brewing.


Collaboration with Schooner Exact’s Matt McClung Highlights Industry Camaraderie

Seattle, WA (January 29, 2020) — Lucky Envelope Brewing has partnered with Matt McClung, original co-founder of Schooner Exact Brewing, to brew and release Tomodachi Collaboration IPA–a West Coast IPA with a new school twist. The new beer launched at Lucky Envelope’s Ballard taproom in late December and will soon be available in craft beer bars throughout Japan–a first for the brewery.

Tomodachi, the Japanese word for “friend,” aims to highlight the camaraderie between Lucky Envelope and McClung, a long-time industry friend of the crew at Lucky Envelope. McClung had been doing engineering, expansion and repair work for Lucky Envelope since departing from Schooner Exact in late 2017 and that work ultimately lead to the idea for the collaboration beer.

The Tomodachi Collaboration IPA (5.8% ABV, 42 IBU) can be described as a classic West Coast IPA with a new school twist. It’s loaded with citrusy, pine and dank notes, and was brewed with Chinook, Cascade, Centennial, and Simcoe Cryo hops to achieve a classic hop punch while retaining a restrained bitterness.

“Inspiration behind the Tomodachi Collaboration IPA began with my desire to brew a beer that pays homage to the legendary but now defunct BridgePort Brewing IPA–one of the Pacific Northwest’s original bitter hop bombs,” McClung said. The team decided to create a beer that focused on classic piney, citrusy hops, then the new school twist was conceived by adding Cryo Simcoe for an extra hop punch and slightly reducing the bitterness for balance.

“I’ve always seen Matt as a positive role model in the brewing industry,” Barry Chan, Brewmaster and Co-Founder of Lucky Envelope, said.  “Not only did he make great beers, but–more important to me–he was incredibly friendly and open to sharing brewing knowledge even when I first met him as a homebrewer in 2010.”

Combine that friendship and passion for brewing with Japanese export contacts that McClung developed from his Schooner Exact days and the idea to sell Tomodachi in Japan was born. “The Japanese craft beer scene is growing rapidly and there are both sales both travel opportunities if you are able to connect with an importer,” Chan added.

Other Lucky Envelope Beers also making their way to Japan include such favorites as ENIAC Mosaic IPA, Raspberry Sour, Vienna Lager, Peanut Butter Cream Stout, and Blood Orange ENIAC IPA.

While this was McClung’s first time brewing since leaving Schooner Exact, he’s been consulting for San Juan Seltzer (previously Schooner Exact) and Hale’s Brewery, in addition to the engineering work with Lucky Envelope.

Lucky Envelope Brewing takes its name from the Chinese tradition – tied closely with New Year celebrations – of elders bestowing red-and-gold envelopes to loved ones as a gesture of luck and goodwill. Brewing philosophy centers on the concept of culturally inspired beer, in which recipes draw from modern and historic styles, techniques, and ingredients. The Ballard neighborhood brewery is an award-winning family-friendly taproom in the city of Seattle. Accolades garnered since its opening May 2015 include medals from the Washington Beer Awards and the prestigious 2015 Great American Beer Festival® (GABF) competition.


One comment

  1. Kind of excited for this. I feel like WA gets the shaft far too often both domestically and internationally. In East Asia people are always into whatever San Diego is doing and some of the Oregon biggies without ever a mention of our great, great beers.

    More WA awareness abroad is great!

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