Beer that claims to taste of joy is launched

By Ben Winstanley

- Last updated on GMT

Happy beer brewed by IBM Watson supercomputer

Related tags Beer

Data experts at Havas Helia and IBM Watson claim to have created a beer that "tastes of joy and optimism" after researchers profiled 2,800 beer recipes to match their ingredients to emotional states.

Brewed in partnership with Peak District-based microbrewery High Peak Brew Co, the self-proclaimed 'smart beer' was generated through a supercomputer that analysed people's new year messages on social media and then hand-picked ingredients that created the same emotional state.

The complex process involved analysts feeding the Watson Personality Insights supercomputer descriptions of ingredients, recipes, tasting notes and reviews for the thousands of beers before the software categorised them according to human characteristics, such as 'assertive', 'friendly' and 'intelligent'.

Ten beers matching the happiest emotions were subsequently chosen and their most common ingredients formed the basis of the beer recipe.

Havas Helia executive creative director Steven Bennett-Day said: "We wanted to use data and technology to interpret something abstract such as positive feelings and emotions and turn it into an experience. We thought what could be better than a beer that lets you drink in the optimism of the new year?"

Emerging as the top three most common ingredients were honey, the Nelson Sauvin hop variety and the Hallertauer hop, which were used to create new year beer 0101. Honey is said to denote "love and cheerfulness", Nelson Sauvin hops "optimism, imagination and resolution" and Hallertauer hops "excitement and emotion".

Ben Millner, head brewer at High Peak Brew Co, said: "The beer is an American cream ale style, where I’ve used honey instead of sugar. It's a pure pale ale with a malt back bone with honey, gooseberry and grape coming through in the taste with a hint of bitterness.

"It's really fresh and bright. I think it makes you sit back and chill out and makes you look forward to the summer months."

The 4.5% ABV beer is limited to 500 bottles at present but if there is demand, it may be available to the on-trade in due course. 

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