For those readers who don't already know, Brew Your Own's headquarters are in Southern Vermont — about an hour and a half from the brewery that's popping up on every beer drinker's most wanted list these days — The Alchemist. Every now and then our little state gets swept up in a big trend, and I have to admit it's kind of exciting. Right now all of the beer drinkers in Vermont are sort of basking in the glory of The Alchemist and the interest they've been getting for their humble double IPA, Heady Topper.
The reason why everyone loves this beer is obvious - it's just really delicious. But Vermonters also love a story of the little guy overcoming big odds, and in that respect there is a lot to love in Heady Topper aside from the hops and malts.
Heady Topper is a beer sensation that might not have happened. The original brewpub was heavily damaged in the flooding that impacted the entire state during Hurricane Irene in 2011, just before the brewery was set to release the fan favorite in 16-oz. cans for the first time. Shortly following the flood, The Alchemist website read, "Disaster strikes Waterbury. The Alchemist Pub and Brewery was ruined in a once in a generation flood on Sunday night August 28, 2011. While the cannery is fine and on target to open this coming Friday, the Pub will be closed for the foreseeable future. With our endless thanks and gratitude to our loyal and returning friends, customers and fans, we will be back. Stay tuned..."