Tag Archives: IPA

Schlafly Tasmanian IPA

Schlafly TIPASchlafly Tasmanian IPA promises to be one of the most unique beers I’ve ever had. Not only does it use just one type of hops, but it’s an Australian hop, Galaxy.

Color is perhaps the lightest I’ve ever seen in an IPA. If not for the cloudiness and the head, you might think like is a macro lager! The aroma is kind of funky. Kinda off putting, actually. However, that funkiness isn’t in the flavor. There is a fruitiness to it, but not quite like the citrus flavors from most hops. Mellow for an IPA, but I like it. Sneaky ABV at 7.2%

Gotta love the uniqueness. Bonus points just for that!

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Two Beers Brewing Fresh Hop IPA

The thing that makes fresh hopped beers so different is that the hops go straight from the field to the beer, no processing in between. Makes for a unique character. This is a one from Two Beers Brewing in Seattle.

The huge hoppy aroma and gigantic head are the first things that stand out. A delightful mix of pine, citrus, and grass. This carries over to the flavor with a blend of fresh Simcoe, Amarillo, Columbus, Centennial, and Cascade hops. Thankfully, they didn’t ignore the malt as the backbone stands up to the hops. Biting and bitter, as an IPA should be, this celebrates hops without being heavy handed. Although it does pack 70 IBUs and 6.2% ABV.

It’s really, really good.

Grade: A

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Mother’s Lil’ Helper

Mothers Lil HelperThis is my first beer from Mother’s, and I’m already a big fan, even before opening it. Not only does it share the name of a great Stones song, the label offers food pairings, and the description of “Midwest Coast IPA” is a fun little jab.

Pours clear and light orange. Aroma lets you know it’s definitely an IPA. Balance is the key here. Starts a little sweet. The hops are noticeable, but not overpowering (for an IPA). A mix of citra, cascade, centennial, chinook, summit, & simcoe hops. Finish is long, dry, and bitter.

Very well rounded IPA. Listed at 7% ABV and 70 IBU, so I’m wondering if my bottle is a little old. Regardless, it’s quite nice.

Grade: B

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Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster

Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster

Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster

I was going through my previous reviews and was shocked, shocked I tell you, that I had not written about Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster.

This is a late spring seasonal Double IPA. Pours lighter than you would expect a DIPA to be, but don’t let that fool you, this monster packs quite the bite. One whiff and you’ll know. Sweet honey and malt and first, then a huge hit from the hops. Sweet citrus, some pine, and lingering grapefruit. Bit of heat at the end with 9.1% ABV. Considering there are only two malts: Harrington 2-Row and Caramel 30, and two hops: Simcoe and Willamette, Monster has amazing complexity.

One of my favorite IPAs. It’s a shame it’s a seasonal

Grade: A

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Samuel Adams Magnificent Seven

Samuel Adams Magnificent SevenWhile a Samuel Adams product, Magnificent Seven is actually the winner of their homebrew competition. I love that  Boston Beer has a contest like this.

Magnificent Seven is so named because of the seven hops varieties used. Darker than most IPAs, it’s a crisp, clear amber. Hops completely dominate the aroma, as they should. Very nice blend of flavor from the hops, too. Pine, grapefruit, some grassy notes. Roasted caramel comes through, too.

As far as some of the stats, 7.8% ABV, which is well hidden. Haven’t seen an IBU count, but I’d guess somewhere in the 50-60 range.

Great contest, great beer. Maybe some days my homebrews will be this good!

Grade: A

P.S. You should probably listen to this while drinking it

 

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Fat Head’s Head Hunter IPA

Fat Head's Head Hunter

Fat Head’s Head Hunter

I’ve been trying to get my hands on this one for a while. With quite the cult following and many prestigious awards to back it up, here is Fat Head’s Head Hunter IPA.

Pours incredibly crisp and clear with a sticky white head that won’t go away. Citrus and pine dominate the aroma, as expected. Lots and lots of hops here. Attractive lacing, too. At 87 IBUs, you’ll definitely feel the bitterness. Not much in the way of malt for balance, it’s a just a big bruiser. So if that’s your thing, you’ll love it!

Grade: A

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Great Lakes Alchemy Hour DIPA

Great Lakes Alchemy Hour

Great Lakes Alchemy Hour

Great Lakes is not known for big, hoppy brews. But if they keep pumping out gems like Alchemy Hour, that could change.

The extra hops are evident early in the aroma with overflowing grapefruit and sweet citrus. The citrus hops hit first, but the pine comes in at the end. Sweet malt and citrus balance with bitter hops brilliantly. With a combination of Mosaic, Nugget, and Cascade hops, I’ve never had a beer quite like this. At 80 IBUs and 9.4% ABV, this is quite a hefty beer, but it should be.

Another outstanding offering from Great Lakes

Update: In year two of this seasonal, they have changed the name to Chillwave. It’s still outstanding

Grade: A

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Great Lakes Rye of the Tiger

Great Lakes Rye of the Tiger

Great Lakes Rye of the Tiger

I like that Rye malt is a growing trend in craft beer. Here is the very cleverly named Rye of the Tiger from Great Lakes.

I expected the color to be more red, but this is a faint orange. Viscous head won’t let go of the glass. Spicy hops present in the aroma. Don’t be mislead by the Rye in the name, this is a full on IPA. And wow does this tiger attack. Clocking in at 92 IBUs, this is hugely bitter. That’s a full 12 IBUs more than Great Lakes’ new DIPA (which I will be getting to soon). The rye is there if you search for it, but this is all about the hops. It’s very interesting coming from Great Lakes. Don’t get me wrong, I love Great Lakes, but most of their beers are not this aggressively hopped.

Hop heads will delight

Grade: A

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Lagunitas Sucks

Lagunitas Sucks

Lagunitas Sucks

Their words, not mine. Also their words

Originally brewed in 2011 as a Brown Shugga’ substitute, due to construction-induced capacity issues. But we liked it so much it had to make a return trip.

So here we have Lagunitas Sucks, a brew boasting a complex malt backbone and a whopping dose of hops to make it a double IPA.

Pours a bit lighter and crisper than expected. The frothy white head doesn’t stick around for long. Hops completely dominate the aroma. Yeah, a double IPA for sure. Hop oils assault the palate. Grapefruit and pine, mostly. Hint of heat from the 7.8% ABV. Rye comes through a bit in the finish. But this is all about the hops. Surprisingly, it’s only 65 IBUs. Thought this would push closer to 100.

Hop heads, get it!

Grade: A

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New Albanian Hoptimus

New Albanian Hoptimus

New Albanian Hoptimus

This is the first I’ve ever heard of New Albanian Brewing Company, which is in New Albany, Indiana.

Hoptimus is their Imperial IPA. With a kickass robot  brandishing a red star and boasting 100 IBUs, Hoptimus seems to be saying “I will break your taste buds.”

Pours orange and surprisingly crisp and clear for an Imperial IPA. Thin layer of a white head floats atop. The aroma is all fresh, citrusy hops. The punch is not as big as expected from a 100 IBU beer, but you know it’s an IPA. Loads of citrus and grassy hops give it a very fresh, summery flavor. Enough sweetness from the malt to cut through. With no bottling date, there is no way to know how old it is. The flavor is great, but I’m wondering if the hops have lost some potency. Oh, and it clocks in pushing 11% ABV.

Even if this is a little old, it’s really tasty. Lots of hops, enough malt to give it some balance, and deceptively smooth for its ABV and IBU. I’ll definitely do this again!

Grade: A

 

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