Brasserie Lefèbvre ‘Hopus’ Belgian IPA


imageAfter being persuaded by the bloke at ‘Bottle O’Briens’ we thought we ought to try it. Bottle is very Belgian with the short, rotund shape, rustic label and swing top cap to finish it off. Hopefully it tastes as good as it looks.

Served in a beer tulip the cloudy amber pour possesses quite a lot of unsettling floaties. Nice constant stream of bubbles make their way up to construct the huge 1 and a half inch off white head that slowly reduces to an egg-shaped crown. Healthy lacing. First thing that hits our olfactories is that funky and slightly citric Belgian yeast accentuated by wafts of banana, pear, candy sugar, musk, pot pourri and grain. It’s spruiked on the bottle that there are 5 different hops in this brew, but all we can manage to pick up are some faint herbal undertones. Quite a thick mouth feel that coats the whole palate. Slightly creamy texture with vibrant carbonation. Not a great deal of body, which when we factor in the ABV of 8.3% it’s surprisingly light and void of any harsh alcohol burn. Upfront we get a decent burst of citrus, hay and spice with a muted hint of hop bitterness running through it. A mild mustiness in the mid-palate is followed by the soft, spicy finish. Standard length. Our only gripe is this is called a Belgian IPA, so it would be fair to expect a big presence of hops but the hops are completely MIA which leaves us thinking of this beer as more of a Belgian strong ale. Highly palatable but not at all memorable. Just OK.