Sunshine in the gaze, Cream Ale in the glass.

Cream Ale Essay by - Alex from Churcheim Brewing

When the established ale breweries in Northeastern USA faced competition from new lager breweries in the mid-1850s, innovation was needed to avoid losing market shares. The first use of the name Cream Ale was for marketing purposes but later became the name of the beer style we know today: Experimentation with alternative grains such as corn and rice in addition to different yeast strains led to the birth of the hybrid style. Not unlike the story of how Kölsch beer came to be in Cologne, western Germany.

Naturally, Cream Ale has been most popular in Northeastern USA, especially in the states of New York and Philadelphia, which are considered the birthplaces of the style. The most famous American version and the most commercially successful should be Genesee Brewing's "Cream Ale," from Rochester, New York. Genesee brewed its Cream Ale for the first time in the 1960s, and the beer has been the brewery's flagship beer since then, with over 120,000 check-ins on the beer app Untappd. They were one of the breweries that revived the style after it had been dormant since the American Prohibition era.

Cream Ale, along with California Commons, Kentucky Commons, and Amber Ale, belongs to the classic American beer styles that emerged long before double IPAs and New England IPAs, and is categorized as 1C in the international beer judge program BJCP. The style is defined by its freshness, drinkability, and having a bit more flavor character than the classic American lager. It's worth noting that BJCP also refers to it as a lawnmower beer.

Modern times, Norwegian innovations.

For me personally, my first encounter with Cream Ale was in the summer of 2019 at Amundsen Spiseri & Bryggeri in Oslo, where their Krispy Boi introduced me to the style. Another commercial example from Norway is Oslo Brewing Company's "Americana", which is available at Vinmonopolet and has slightly higher alcohol content than the average for the style (5.2%). Ølsmia in Oslo has a beer in its catalog called Dugg, simply described as "A Norwegian light beer," which falls under the Cream Ale category and is available locally here in Oslo in cans. Can´t recommend Dugg enough if you want a proper pour of Cream ale!

At Churcheim Brewing, we have used pilsner malt and flaked corn to build a solid base for our contribution to the innovation of the style - our very own Rampanth Growth. As a finishing touch we used small dose of cascade hops to add some freshness. Uncomplicated, easy to like, and maximized drinkability. Enjoy fresh right now if you subscribe to Lokalbrygg. Will be available later at well-stocked Coop stores, Gulating Stores, Birk Bryggeriutsalg and other independent beer shops in Norway shortly🍻

The name "Rampant Growth" is inspired by the Magic: The Gathering Card that goes by the same name. For the love of the game and its impact on our lives.