The Ventura, California-based outdoor gear company announced on Monday the launch of its Long Root Ale, a 5.5 percent alcohol pale ale described as having a grapefruit hop flavor. Made in Portland, Oregon, at Hopworks Urban Brewery, Long Root Ale is the latest in Patagonia's four-year-old food and beverage line Patagonia Provisions, which also includes items like soup, jerky and snack bars. Besides the organic barley, yeast and three hop varieties, the beer is made with Kernza--a special grain the company says actually regenerates soil and air.
"It's a new food crop that acts like a sponge for carbon," Birgit Cameron, the Senior Director of Patagonia Provisions, told Bloomberg. Developed in Kansas by The Land Institute, this rice-like grain's deep, dense root system keeps soil in place to prevent erosion. It's also a perennial plant, so it doesn't require tilling of the field every year to re-sow. Kernza requires less water than wheat and the Land Institute says it soaks up carbon from the atmosphere. Oh, and you can also make beer with it.
This isn't Patagonia's first beer on tap. The company partnered with New Belgium in 2013 to make an organic lager called California Route, but it was only sold in about 12 Patagonia stores. Long Root Ale's 16-ounce cans can be found at Whole Foods across California, at two Portland Hopworks locations and in Seattle at coffee shop and tap room, Miir Flagship Store.