One whiff and I was hooked on this super sessionable brew. As soon as you crack the top of the can your smacked in the face with a bountiful bouquet of mango deliciousness. Those aromatics are rounded out with a whiff of citrus following all the juicy mango. It pours an unassuming crystal clear golden orange with a light and quickly dissipating head. From the looks of it you would never suspect that there is a huge amount flavor hiding in there. Tasting this brew starts with a burst of mango that leads to flavors of orange peel and bitter mandarin orange. Intermingled among the all the bold fruit flavors are notes pine and lemon that carry you to a lingering mango and citrus finish.
Overall there are tons of aromatics and flavor with out overdoing the mango and fruit flavors. The flavors pleasantly stay with you for a while. I am really looking forward to popping the top on one of these while floating down the river in my kayak on a hot summer day.
“Your hands and feet are mangos, You’re gonna be a genius anyway” – Phish
A bunch of great beers hit the shelves this month and quickly vanished. One of my favorites was Sucks by Lagunitas. It is a highly sought after West Coast IPA that was hard to come by on the east coast.
The hoppy brew pours a crisp clear golden color with a quickly dissipating head. Light pine, herbs, and grapefruit dominate the aroma coming out of the glass. The body is light yet a touch creamy. When you take a sip resinous pine and citrus explode across your palate followed up by a lingering bitterness.
This exquisitely crafted IPA is totally worth hunting down. It is full of flavor and easy to put down. It sucks that it’s so hard to find!
Victory – DirtWolf IIPA
Another great IPA from Victory! DirtWolf IIPA starts out with a bold amount of grapefruit and sweet malt on the nose. There is a bit of a floral/fruity note lingering in the aroma as well. This is followed up by a right hook of pine trees and then a left hook of sweet malt on the palate. It isn’t a huge uppercut to the jaw kind of double IPA, it’s smoother then that. This may not be the west coast hop bomb of a IIPA that I usually seek out, but it is certainly a knock out.
Smuttynose RHYE IPA
This thick skinned IPA is not your typical IPA; it’s been Rye’d! This bottle poured with a strong hop aroma from the heavy amount of dry hopping that features Simcoe and Amarillo hops. This medium to light bodied IPA boasts loads of Rye in the malt bill and it is apparent in the flavor lending subtle hints of Rye peppery-ness throughout the brew. This is a solid and distinct easy drinking Rye IPA.
Green Flash Palate Wrecker
I haven’t had one of these bad boys in about a year until the other day. It is a monster filled with oodles of hop flavor. This thing gets it’s outstanding “I’m sucking on a hop cone” flavor from mashing and sparging with hopped wort and a serious regiment of hopping during the boil. This brew has a pungent resinous pine flavor through out. There is not an over the top bitterness to this beer; with the amount of hop flavor it is kind of surprising. One thing that I found odd is that this beer had no nose to it. Like seriously no smell. I had two other folks give it a whiff and nothing. I don’t recall this being the case last time I tried the beer but the bottle I tried was quite a few months old at least if I am not mistaken. Either way it was delicious, bold, and enjoyable. One tip for drinking this beer: DO NOT DRINK THIS FIRST! If you are going to drink some different beers and are looking to actually taste the hops in them then leave this beer for last cause it truly does wreck your palate.
Clown Shoes Galactica
Clown Shoes Galactica IIPA is a hop forward West Coast style IIPA that is heavily dry hopped with Galaxy hops. This big 8% abv hoppy beer hits you with notes of tropical fruit, citrus and pine from the second you smell to the instant you taste it. All those hops are backed up by a solid, crisp and non-intrusive malt backbone. Clown Shoes beers are contract brewed by Mercury Brewing Co. in Ipswich, Massachusetts where they also brew Ipswich and Brash beers.
To Øl Sleep Over Coffee IIPA
Freaking Delicious. I wasn’t to sure what to expect when I cracked this thing open. I’ve had one other coffee IPA (Mikkeller Koppi) in the past and it was a decent brew but I didn’t get that much coffee flavor out of it; it wasn’t the hit of coffee that I was expecting. So I didn’t expect much from this beer because of my previous experience with this style and man I am happy to report that this coffee IPA was the shit. Wow. Now when I poured this thing it was a little funky looking with a cloudy orange and tan body but it had nice foamy head (the color in the pic above doesn’t look quite the same as it did in person). When I shoved my nose in there it had an interesting aroma of coffee and Worcestershire sauce; it smelt good though, just kinda meaty in a good way. At this point I was getting a little concerned as to what I was getting myself into. But like any good adventurer I said “fuck it” and gave it a taste. I made the right choice. My palate was blasted with smooth notes of lightly roasted coffee that was balanced with a bright tangerine hoppyness. Those flavors make for a wonderful combination. This brew left me wanting another one and yearning to try some more coffee infused IPA’s. This is not currently a hugely popular beer style so who knows how long I’ll have to hunt to find another. But when I do find one, if it is even half as good as Sleep Over it will have been worth the search.
IPA DAY 2013 – Bell’s Hop Slam IIPA, Omnipolo Moebius IIPA, Dogfish Head 120 Minute IIPA
I hope everyone had the chance to drink some hoppy and heady beers yesterday for International IPA Day. I managed to make some time for a few tasty beverages throughout the day. I started IPA Day off right with a pint of Hopgasm from 5 Seasons Brewery Prado accompanied by a tasty pulled pork Cuban sandwich with french frys. I love some Hopgasm, it is big and hoppy with just the right amount of bitterness and malt. Yum. I want one right now. I wish the brewpub could sell growlers of that tasty shit… And we’re back.
Later in the evening I sat down with a buddy of mine to check out some bigger IPA’s that I’ve been meaning to drink. We started with the Moebius IIPA by Omnipolo brewery from Sweden. I thoroughly enjoyed this brew. It poured a nice hazy golden color that hinted at a fuller bodied drinking experience. When you smelt the beer your senses were slammed with giant pine and grapefruit aromas. Your nostrils do not lie because this beer beats up your pallet with pine needles and grapefruits. Loads of ’em. The bitterness is right on point too just when you think it might be to much it plateaus but keeps you hanging on the edge. This might have been my favorite of the beer of the evening.
The next beer in the tasting line up was a 2013 Bell’s Hopslam IIPA that has been aging for many months. This big ass IIPA is brewed with honey to off set some of the bitterness. It is a tasty brew but this one had sat around just a little to long. I don’t want to say that the age on this beer made it malt forward but it certainly lost lots of its hoppy appeal. On the nose there was a hint of spicy hop aroma that was dominated by a sweet malty fragrance. Once you dove in there was a muted hop presence as the sweetness from the honey took center stage. All in all it was still a tasty treat but not the hop bomb I was looking for.
The final beer in the IPA Day tasting lineup was a heavy weight. Dogfish Head 120 Minute IIPA is a giant IPA clocking in at 17.5% abv. From start to finish this beer was a battling for your senses. The bouquet slammed your nose three different ways. Super boozy, super hoppy, and super malty. This theme continued throughout the drinking experience as it turned my taste buds up to 11. This thing is a sipper if I have ever seen one. It is hard to say what aspect stands out most about this beer as your palate just gets hit with repeated overwhelming waves of tasty booze, hops, and malty sweetness. Either way it was a monster and I enjoyed it.
I hope you folks had a hoppy IPA Day too!