PHOENIX (ARIZONA HIGHWAYS TV) - Sure, you can sweat and struggle all the way to the top of Camelback Mountain, or you can drink it all in without ever leaving your bar stool.

More than a hike, more than a landmark, Camelback has also become a brew! Of course, it's a local brew, born right here inside the Phoenix Ale Brewery, near downtown Phoenix.

"You're going to see a light, amber color coming out of that as you tip the glass at about a 45 degree, which is the perfect pour. You start tipping that up to get a quarter of an inch head on that. You get a nice, foamy little head on that," said Johnny Urrea with Phoenix Ale Brewery.

"I think it is growing. It's our flagship beer. We named it after one of the most prominent landmarks in the Valley, Camelback Mountain," he added.

You'll smell the hops. You'll taste the hops. It's got a super clean finish.

"My name is Zach Schroeder. My job here at the Phoenix Ale Brewery is the head brewer and brewmaster," said Zach Schroeder.

So, is there a secret ingredient?

"The water. Water's the most prominent ingredient in beer anyway, and our water comes right here from the ground. So yes, at some point, it probably does flow under Camelback Mountain on some level. But the specifics about it, it's really high in calcium, which allows us to produce a fairly smooth beer," said Schroeder.

It's in cans and bottles, but you might enjoy it most at the Phoenix Ale Central Kitchen, a few miles from the brewery. Here, it's not only on tap, it's in the recipes. Chef Donny blends the beer into things like pickled jalapeno.

It's Camelback IPA, frothing and boiling that does the job of pickling and making beer batters. The joint is true to the Camelback Mountain theme, right down to the restrooms.

"IPAs are a fairly hoppy beer, but in the case of the Camelback, what makes it so special to us is the fact that we balance it quite a bit, and that allows it to be a much smoother drinking product," said Schroeder.

"I have a lot of people that say, 'Hey, I love the Camelback.'"

"As a matter of fact, last week at Strong Beer (Festival), I had somebody tell me that, I was on the other side of Camelback Mountain, and it doesn't even look like the logo. I told him, 'Dude, you're on the wrong side of the mountain, you gotta be on the right side,'" said Urrea.

So it does lend itself to the landmark.

"You know, a lot of other beers along the same style have a tendency to be like a little aggressive on your palette, so after a few of 'em, again, it's like eating spicy foods sometimes, you're like, enough's enough. Where, Camelback, it can go down and down and down, if you're not careful," said Schroeder.

 

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