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Little Creatures launches Squeaky Clean ‘better for you’ IPA

Little Creatures Squeaky Clean IPA

Little Creatures Squeaky Clean is a lower calorie IPA inspired by an American craft brewing trend towards healthier hop-forward beers.

The national packaged launch of Squeaky Clean follows the successful draught trial at Little Creatures Fremantle of an earlier iteration, Early Riser Lower Cal IPA, which contained 91 calories per 285ml middy.

“The better for you trend is now hitting all sorts of sectors,” Little Creatures Fremantle head brewer Russ Gosling told Drinks Adventures.

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“There’s a group of people who are really conscious about their consumption, and their limit seems to be 100 calories.

“I don’t know who arrived at the 100 calories, but it’s a nice round number.”

Gosling said lower calorie IPAs are now extremely common among American brewers, with contenders including Deschutes Wowza!, Bell’s Light Hearted and Dogfish Head Slightly Mighty.

“A lot of the US brewers I spoke to inferred these 100 cal versions are very popular from Monday to Thursday, but not particularly popular on Fridays and Saturdays,” he said.

Gosling said a typical six per cent ABV IPA would contain between 150 and 170 calories, and the main driver is its alcohol content.

Squeaky Clean is a four per cent IPA containing less than 100 calories per 375ml can, with clean bitterness and tropical and citrus aromatics courtesy hopping with Ekuanot, Loral, Melba and Sabro.

“We wanted something clean so we used CO2 hop extract in the brewhouse to try and reduce the green vegetative matter, and again in the dry hop to get clean aromatics,” Gosling said.

As to whether Squeaky Clean should be called an IPA with an ABV of just four per cent, Gosling said that ship sailed long ago.

“All these styles are now so intermingled, it’s extremely difficult to navigate,” he said.

“IPA seems to be a tag for anything that’s heavily hopped and dry hopped, regardless of the ABV.”

In any case, he said there is some significant historical context for lower ABV IPAs in the UK.

“Quite a few of the old regional brewers have IPAs at 3.5 per cent, and that was because some of the returning troops that relocated back to the UK from India wanted the style but didn’t want the ABV,” he said.

Little Creatures Squeaky Clean is available nationally in packaged format from retailers including Dan Murphy’s and Liquorland.

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