Top 10 space-related drinks launches

Space yeast

The NASA planes used to capture the yeast. Image: Lanikai Brewing Co.

Last month Mainiacal Yeast Labs managed to isolate brewing yeast from an air sample collected in space by two NASA research pilots.

The US company, which specialises in sourcing “unique yeast and bacteria” for home and professional brewers, recently teamed up with Lanikai Brewing Co. in Hawaii to help source space yeast for the brewer’s Interplanetary Ale, created to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.

According to reports by Forbes, Lanikai Brewing Company co-founder, CEO, and brewmaster, Steve Haumschild, befriended two NASA research pilots who were able to collect yeast samples in a petri dish. Flying in a NASA ER2 plan, they were able to collect the yeast while flying at 70,000 feet from air coming through the intake vent.

Justin Amaral, co-owner and head of lab services at Mainiacal Yeast then worked to isolate the yeast strains, eventually finding two different strains in the petri dish. One proved viable for brewing, though needed to be combined with another strain in order for it consume enough sugar to make good quality beer.

The resulting beer went on sale at the Lanikai Brewing taproom on 20 July.

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