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It Just Looked So Crazy

Congress Label Tile

Congress Street is our beloved, signature IPA - and the first one we ever brewed! More than seven years after we first offered it to the public, we asked JC to take a few moments to reflect on the recipe’s intent and initial release back in 2013.

Q: Congress Street was, in many ways, considered to be the beer that put Trillium on the map. What’s the story behind selecting it’s signature, single dry-hop profile?
JC: There's not a singular story. While I knew that I wanted Trillium to be recognized for hop-forward beers, I couldn't get access to the distinctive, signature Australian Galaxy hop it would take to make the IPA that I wanted to present first. Hop contracts wouldn't be offered to us for a few years due to our lack of track record and small size. I was able to beg and scrounge together a few boxes and brew a couple of 10bbl batches in our first year, but not until after we were open for six months.
While Fort Point was the stake in the ground where we would start our hoppy beer program, I knew we only had one shot at setting our reputation on what Trillium’s IPA was going to be. It had to be Galaxy...bigger, more explosive than Citra, but still familiarly tropical, smooth, and unique. Distinctly different than what almost the entire world of hoppy beer offers at that time.

Q: Take us through the moments leading up to the first release day.
JC: We were ready to release the beer for growler pours and we took a sample from the tank...I was very much taken aback by its appearance. We had made the Citra-centric Fort Point Pale Ale a few times and it leaned moderately hazy, akin to a hefeweizen. This was probably twice that. Completely opaque.

Thinking it was yeast, even though it didn't taste or feel that way, we dropped the temp a few degrees and waited two more days to package it. But there was no change in appearance. It was explosively aromatic, delicious, and elicited quite a few whispered, “oh my God”s every time we tried the beer off the tank. But it just looked so crazy, so I was torn.

Q: So you have a beer, that by all accounts, is drinking better than you could’ve imagined, but you’re not sure what exactly is going on with its appearance. What did you ultimately decide to do with your first-ever publicly released IPA?
JC: Esther and I were living hand-to-mouth at that point, with just two 10bbl fermenters, maxed out credit cards, and no beer left in inventory. It had already taken up three weeks of tank time at that point. So we packaged it, both excited for our fans to try it and anxious about the criticism that would roll in for how it looked. There was plenty of judgment and critique, but far more positivity. We chose to follow those voices. Nearly eight years later, I’m glad we did.

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Keep Cold. Drink Fresh. We're Always Making More!

We are obsessive in our focus on quality. We hire some of the most talented people in our industry, continually evaluate our processes, making improvements wherever possible, cultivate a robust lab and sensory program, and invest in expensive brewing equipment such as a Flottweg decanter, centrifuge, flash pasteurizer, and more. All of this is done with one goal in mind: to ensure that the beer in your glass is memorable, adds enjoyment and value to your lives, and is exactly what we intended it to be.

Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

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Commitment to Diversity and Inclusivity

Trillium is committed to increasing the diversity and inclusivity of our team. From front of house to executive leadership, we hire the best candidate for every role in order to uphold our expectations of world-class quality product and service. We believe anybody and everybody with the right passion and skill can be part of making Trillium a success. To expand the reach of our available opportunities, we specifically take the following steps to recruit, hire, and advance a diverse and inclusive workforce: RECRUITMENT

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