The first lager under the Trooper collaboration – Pilsner-style Sun and Steel – takes its name from an Iron Maiden song appearing on their 1983 Piece of Mind album, which was inspired by the life of Japanese Samurai Miyamoto Musashi.
Designed by Iron Maiden vocalist and beer aficionado Bruce Dickinson in collaboration with Robinsons’ head brewer Martyn Weeks, the idea for the 4.8% ABV double-fermented lager created with authentic Japanese sake yeast stemmed from a meeting with Iron Maiden fan George Yusa, owner of the 300-year-old family-run Okunomatsu Sake Brewery in Fukushima, Japan.
The hybrid beer, which pairs a lager yeast for the initial fermentation followed by a sake yeast for a second fermentation, will be available in the UK from 6 May in celebration of the Trooper brand’s sixth birthday.
Robinsons’ Iron Maiden Trooper beer brand has grown significantly since its inception in 2013, selling more than 20m pints in more than 50 countries its first five years.
Moreover, Sun and Steel becomes Iron Maiden and Robinsons’ first new brew since Light Brigade – a 4.1% ABV English golden ale – launched in February 2018 in support of the UK’s armed forces.
“This has been such an exciting project,” Dickinson explained. “I had a crazy idea to try and make a sake-infused lager and – over two and a half years later – here we are!
“I know Martyn and the team at Robinsons have had to become mad scientists to make this work but the end result is a really unique hybrid beer that tastes fantastic.
“Trooper fans have been asking for a lager, and here it is. I bet you would never have guessed we would do it like this though!”