The elusive Double Sweet Action hasn’t been around in any serious quantities for years now. Sure some wily bartenders stowed some kegs away here and there, but we knew it was getting time to bring this bad ass ale back. We first brewed Double Sweet for the five-year anniversary party in 2010, and now on the heels of our 11th anniversary we dug out the old recipe (and made some key recipe tweaks). It clocks in at 9% ABV and has the balance that’s at the heart of the Sweet Action concept. While the ABV pushes barleywine territory, this beer leans on English Maris Otter barley rather than caramel malts. So it’s rich, but finishes clean and without much residual sweetness.
Head Brewer Danny Bruckert talks about scaling up this recipe:
“The thing with big ass beers like this is you don’t want them to get too hot from the alcohol. And this isn’t a Double IPA with a lot of hops to hide behind, or an aggressive, roasty, imperial stout…
Getting a healthy yeast pitching rate for beers like this is paramount. It keeps the ester profile in check as well as fusel alcohol production. There’s warmth from the alcohol, sure, but Double Sweet Action retains that… well not “drinkability” since it’s really a sipping beer. But it’s a beer you can have a few of, and take big sips.”
Marcus Lutter, another brewer who worked on Double SA said: “I love the balance of the malt and hops. It gets at the essence of Sweet Action.”
The marriage of hops and barley… that’s President and Founder Shane Welch’s idea from way back when Sweet Action was nothing more than a homebrew bubbling away in Madison, Wisconsin. So as we scale up the recipe, balance remains key.
Jeff Gorlechen is one of the OG members of the Sixpoint team. He’s going on ten years as part of the crew and remembers the original 2X Sweet Action. He had some closing comments:
“This is not hard. We took our most popular beer and made it DOUBLE! Think Double Stuff Oreos. Dubble Bubble gum. Hitting the Daily Double. A two-bagger.