Stop, collaborate, and listen: JoBoy’s will unveil Smoke IPA July 4

By on June 30, 2015


COLLABORATION (col·lab·o·ra·tion) noun: The action of working with someone to produce or create something.

Collaborations are one of the hippest things going on in brewing. A brewmaster meets this other brewmaster and they start talking. Next thing you know a common ground is found and each realize they want to work on a similar project — maybe some experimental brew, maybe recreating a lost recipe, every situation is different. For JoBoy’s, the Lititz brewpub’s first collaboration is part anniversary celebration, American holiday, and mutual respect from some pretty big names in regional craft brewing.

A relationship started several years ago between JoBoy’s and two Maryland craft breweries. Folks from DuClaw Brewing Company and Heavy Seas Beer started frequenting the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. The brew-centric people from the Free State made an effort to search out new brewers around the area and eventually found JoBoy’s. Once they found the small brewer — then in Manheim — they were hooked.

“They came into our bar years ago and fell in love with our beer. We got to know each other real well,” said JoBoy’s co-owner Jeff Harless. “They followed us over to Lititz.”

JoBoy’s will unveil its collaborative brew, Smoke IPA, at two allyou-can-eat barbecue meals celebrating its one-year Lititz anniversary on July 4. Pictured below, JoBoy’s co-owner Jeff Harless (stirring) is at the helm during the brewing process, along with experts from DuClaw and Heavy Seas. (Photos provided by JoBoy's)

JoBoy’s will unveil its collaborative brew, Smoke IPA, at two allyou-can-eat barbecue meals celebrating its one-year Lititz anniversary on July 4. Pictured below, JoBoy’s co-owner Jeff Harless (stirring) is at the helm during the brewing process, along with experts from DuClaw and Heavy Seas. (Photos provided by JoBoy’s)

Harless said the Marylanders’ favorite was Red X, an American India Pale Ale (IPA) he was considering shelving. Not Harless’ personal favorite, the dry hopped red IPA with rye became increasingly popular as more and more people experienced it.

“It seemed to be selling really good, so I couldn’t take it off. A lot of people started asking for it,” he said.

Eventually Kurt Krol, a brewer at DuClaw, suggested a collaboration with DuClaw, JoBoy’s, and Heavy Seas. The idea was to mark the first anniversary of the opening of the Lititz location. Once Harless and Krol started talking beers they realized they hadn’t heard of a straight-up, smoked IPA.

“I never even thought about it. There are smoked dark beers, but we couldn’t find any smoked IPAs,” said Harless. “We came up with a recipe and it really tasted good.”

On Friday, June 5, members of all three breweries got together and brewed the new Smoke IPA featuring Nugget and Cascade hops. Harless hosted an old-fashioned pig-pickin’ for the crew. The beer, he said, reminded one of bacon.

“On the Fourth of July we are going to be breaking it out along with a big pig roast,” said Harless.

The anniversary marking event will feature music from a live bluegrass band, all-you-can-eat pork barbecue, and a beer for a price of $25 per person (additional beers can be purchased). Two sessions will take place: one starting at noon, and the other at 4 p.m. Both sessions will last three hours. Harless plans to roast off three whole hogs, so there will be plenty of food to go around. Tickets can be purchased in advance at JoBoy’s or at the door.

“The [collaboration] beer is really good. It hits you with the hops first and then hits you with the smoke. When you eat it with the smoked barbecue it really balances out,” he explained.

I missed the brewing event, but I’ll be sure to get a pint of this new collaboration as soon as the taps open.

Michael C. Upton is a freelance writer specializing in arts and leisure. He welcomes comments at and


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