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Iechyd Da celebrates Indiana Bicentennial with new ale

Tuesday morning, Indiana’s Bicentennial torch passed Iechyd Da Brewing Co.

Tuesday afternoon, its newest beer to honor the anniversary went on tap. The beer dubbed 1816 Indiana Common features all Indiana ingredients and a flavor profile made famous on the West Coast.

A number of Indiana breweries are participating in the Brewers of Indiana Guild project called Bicentenni-Ale. Evil Czech’s offering is Tulip Tree IPA. Goshen Brewing is doing an English-style pale ale.

Gail Martin holds the torch during the Indiana Bicentennial Torch relay. The car is driven by Bill Firstenberg. (Photo Supplied/Summer Lewis)

Iechyd Da isn’t listed on the official site yet, but decided to join in with what some call a steam-style beer. Since Anchor Brewing Co. copyrighted that term, it’s what’s known as a California Common beer made with a lager yeast at ale temperatures. The yeast was around in 1816 when refrigeration didn’t play a role in beermaking, said Summer Lewis, co-owner of Iechyd Da.

“It’s a nice beer,” she said, adding that it’s crisp like a lager and malty like an ale.

The blend of hops came from Cone Keeper’s Hop Yard in Jasper County, who worked with brewer/owner Chip Lewis to craft the right mix of Cascade, Willamette and Wye Viking. Some wild hops from the nearby Ruthmere Museum in Elkhart were also tossed in. Sugar Creek Malt Co. in Boone County provided the grain for the brew.

The brewery made 200 gallons — one for every year of Indiana’s statehood — so it’ll be on tap for a while, Summer said.

The brewery also has some new fall items on the menu, including an autumn cobb salad with roasted squash, and two pizzas featuring fall flavors. “Hello Fall” has apples, beer-braised onions and sage. “Cha-Cha Chorizo” has the spicy sausage and an avocado lime crema.

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