Category Archives: IPA’s

Knee Deep Brewing Co ‘Tahoe Deep’ Double IPA

Rating:

22405409_757033954480752_7306163943081760209_n“Tahoe Deep is an 8.5% ABV Imperial IPA brewed with Centennial, Cascade, and CTZ hops. It’s golden/orange appearance produces fragrant floral, and juicy tropical fruit aromas that lead up to a resinous pine finish. A true West Coast-Style IIPA.”

Served in an IPA glass. She pours a reasonably clear golden orange with a thumb of creamy white foam taking shape on top. Head retention is good and the lacing is even better.
Oodles of west coast hop character on the nose – kind of reminds us of the IPA’s of old with its pithy and slightly acidic grapefruit, orange peel and tangerine. It also has a clean and fresh note to it…plenty of pine needle, light florals, fennel and grassy/herbal hops. The malt is delicate, dry, maybe a little earthy with a woody accent to it. Very well layered.
It hits the taste buds with a fair bit of vigour. A short and flavoursome burst of citrus fruits, pine and semi sweet malt is quickly eclipsed by a spiky line of booze (8.5%) and aggressive bitterness midway. Despite that it does bring a certain citric/grapefruit element to the table as it leads in to the sharp, piney and warming finish.
Quite full on and prickly in the mouth, definitely doesn’t try and hide the booze. Fairly moderate body and co2 with a feisty 66 IBU.
One of those in-your-face west coast IPA’s. Let’s be fair, it is a double IPA so it’s naturally going to be a bit of a palate wrecker but it could mellow out a little on the booze and bitterness….nevertheless it’s a good drop with truck loads of fresh hop flavour and aroma.

Founders Brewing ‘Doom’ Barrel Aged Imperial IPA

Rating:

22228496_755785281272286_7685799719456239865_n“Doom may be impending but that doesn’t mean you have to fear it. A collision of worlds, the intense hop character of our imperial IPA mingles with the warm vanilla and oak notes imparted from time spent in our favorite bourbon barrels. Like all good things, Doom comes to those who wait.”

Served in an IPA glass. Slightly hazy amber hue with a steady stream of co2 rising up to retain the solid two finger head. Healthy lace work sticks to the glass as it ebbs.
The nose is very dank, very heady and boozy with a firm showing of bourbon from the months aged on bourbon barrels. In light of this though, we still pick up undertones of pine resin, woody oak, stewed citrus and grassy/herbal hops. Certainly can’t ignore the sticky and almost syrupy malt structure either. Good Lord this smells incredible.
Wow, the flavour hits the taste buds for six! Not on palate-wrecking level but bloody close to it. We get an overwhelming rush of burning alcohol and aggressive bitterness on entry. Some residual sugars and caramel malt sweetness hang around but never get the chance to make any real impact. Tasting woody oak and vanilla as it rolls in to a sharp and ultra bitter finish that offers piney and grassy hop notes on the rear.
The texture is quite sticky and dense but also extremely bitter and dry. Co2 is low and the 100 IBU ain’t afraid to show us.
Barrel aged IPA’s?! Now we’ve seen it all. It literally takes the preconceived idea of drinking them fresh and throws it out the window…..or in this case, in to a bourbon barrel. Definitely a slow quaffer and a pretty good one all the same.

Amager & Wicked Weed ‘Mandarina Man’ Tropical IPA

Rating:

22141118_754645694719578_9010044871705654580_nThe description of this beer is simply way too long and strange to post but once we realised it was a collaboration brew with Wicked Weed it all started to make sense. It may possibly be that these two brewers had a bit of the wicked weed before coming up with the story? Who knows, any who on with this review.

Served in an IPA glass. Light golden yellow in appearance. Soft haze, mild co2 and a wispy head that eventually settles to a film. Lacing is wet and streaky as we go.
We’re a tad undecided with this aroma. It’s mild, citric and summery but it’s extremely one dimensional and lacking substance. We pick up plenty of mandarin, lemon, tangerine and some unripened mango. The malt backing is a little dry and bready but mostly shy and ineffective. Some piney notes here and there. Average.
It doesn’t get any better in flavour as an acidic and tart citrus flavour gets things started. It’s a bit like biting in to an unripened mandarin. Hints of orange peel, sour fruits, tangerine and dry bready malts roll in to the somewhat delicate and dry finish which actually offers some decent length.
A bit of a mineraly texture, mild-moderate co2 and body. The 7% ABV is well concealed. 45 IBU.
OK, be sure to check your pour! As we poured the remainder of the bottle there were some big floaties and a tonne of suspended sediment. Looks very unflattering. It’s lacking depth, it’s unattractive and offering little in aroma and flavour. Disappointing.

Amager & Trillium ‘Sigtebroad’ NEIPA

Rating:

22045785_753004118217069_3614015923388914764_n “It appears that the word “sigte” – in English “to aim” – can be taken back to the Viking era, where a “Sigtebrød” would be baked very hard as a substitute for a traditional longbow in areas where wood was scarce or even absent. After the victorious battle the Viking could then toast their bread bow on a traditional Anglo Saxon toaster. Illustrations of this bread bow have been found in several places in Ireland and Scotland, but not until recently did the confused archaeologists realize, what exactly was going on. Several hundred years later, Danish settlers in Minnesota brought the old Viking bread with them, and it soon gained widespread popularity. Also the bakery girls of blonde, Danish descent selling the bread, became popular to an extreme degree, and local Minnesotans soon nicknamed them “sigte broads” for their good looks. In some areas the baker even had to arm his sigte broads with a traditional Danish long knife to dishearten the most intrusive young, male bread costumers. All very weird, but indeed very true.”

Served in an IPA glass. Pouring a cloudy orange with a loosely packed head which inflates to two fingers before retracting to a rocky overlay. We’re seeing a wet and spotty lace clinging to the glass as it ebbs.
Definitely a lot of orange citrus character emanating. Slightly tangy, slightly spicy and a little tropical as a hint of citronella comes through. We didn’t notice it initially but the dry and bready undertones offer a solid balance and a bit of depth. Lots of grapefruit, citrus rind, mango, pine and lychee too. Impressive.
The flavour comes on nicely – juicy, tropical and citrusy with a firm spicy rye/cereal malt at the base. Like the aroma we’re getting more of the doughy malt as it settles but the hop driven notes of pine, stonefruit, citrus and grassy hops set up for a dry and bitter finish with plenty of length in the back end.
Creamy texture, nice and full in the mouth and perfectly carbonated. Well concealed bitterness and alcohol (6.8%) too.
Amager have always been a busy brewery but this recent project of collaborations with popular up and coming American breweries is really cool…..and genius we might add. We don’t see much of these rare American breweries down under so keep it coming guys!

Sierra Nevada 2017 Edition ‘Hoptimum’ IIPA

Rating:

21768105_751656441685170_491669836068992678_n“Our brewers selected the finest, most flavorful hops, pushed them beyond their limits and forged them into this all-new triple IPA. This reimagined Hoptimum is our hoppiest beer yet, providing a blend of tropical and citrus hop aroma that delivers a refined yet aggressive character.”

Served in an IPA glass. Amber to orange appearance with a healthy two finger crown forming on top. The head holds together superbly and weaves a nice thick lace down the sides of the glass.
We’re getting fistfuls of grassy, citric and piney hop character leading out. In support are heady notes of candied lemon, hop oils, aniseed, ripe grapefruit, dank pine resins and just a pinch of alcohol creeping through. It’s quite well balanced on this sweet and slightly syrupy/honeyed malt base. That’s a fine aroma right there.
It opens up with a rush of dank resinous pine, bitter citrus and a delicate honey malt sweetness on the flank. A fleeting hint of passion fruit before the warming booze ensues. From there it’s aggressive and bitter with grapefruit, citrus rind and grassy hops going the distance on the back palate.
The texture is thick and full bodied but it does get a nice lift from the vibrant co2. Aggressive bitterness (65 IBU) along with significant warmth from the booze (9.6%)
A very well constructed imperial IPA. And we say imperial as it’s clearly not a triple IPA when it’s weighing in at under 10% ABV. Semantics! We have to give credit where it’s due. This is a big, bitey and in-your-face American IPA that went down a treat on this hot spring day.

Six Strings ‘DOUBLE’ dark red IPA

Rating:

image“With double the malt and triple the hops, this is the amped version of the red IPA. The use of caramel and chocolate give it the red colour. A resiny, citrus smell dominates from late hop additions. At 10% and 100IBU this IPA will have you seeing double!”

We love the red IPA so we are frothing over this. First crack of the can elicits that same hoppy aroma of the red IPA but way more booze. Pours a beautiful mahogany/Amber red with a creamy 15mm almost- tan head that sits like a cumulus cloud and doesn’t budge. Very very slowly recedes leaving a honeycombed lacing effect on the glass. Aroma of pine, resin, grapefruit, toffee, booze warmth, subtle chocolate sweetness. First sip is heaven. All of the above aromas but a booze undertone that doesn’t overpower yet warms the belly like a aged red wine. There is almost a barley wine thing going on here. We thinking dark fruits, prunes, port like etc. This is a solid beer. Full body here, like your eating it. It’s luscious on the tongue. Bitterness is amazingly subdued for 100 IBU. It just blends into the 10% Alc volume leaving a grapefruit like tartness on the back palate. This has definitely registered on the brain. Slight buzz going on. The resin, pine and toffee/caramel malts match so well and disguise the booze undertone also. We don’t get as much smoked flavour like we got from the original but it’s there in the background. So sticky on the lips this brew. The lacing down the glass backs this up. Relatively mild carbonation going on. Wow. This has to be up there with the champagne bottle series ‘1-3’ as being their best brew to date. We could easily do another but will likely pay for it. Oh well who cares, your only young once right? Exceptional drop. We hope this is not just a limited release and never re-appears. Better than the red IPA hands down. Hard to fault.

Deep Creek Brewing Co ‘Pontoon In A Monsoon’ IPA

Rating:

21687822_750410075143140_158722469231749229_n“Those long 19th century trips from the British Isles to the East Indies were a tough old journey for the barrels of beer that were sent to quench the thirst of the troops. Smart thinking resulted in loading the brews with hops to act as a natural preservative… and the India Pale Ale (IPA) was born! We loaded our galleon with a boat load of pale crystal malt, plus Centennial and Cascade hops, to bring you a strong IPA with toffee orange flavours.”

Served in an IPA glass. Nice clear amber pour with a tightly held two finger crown perched on top. Retention is good and the lacing is thick and soapy as we imbibe.
Uber American on the nose – clean, piney, citric and fresh. Has this super clean Hop Hunter scent like they’ve used hop oils. Wave after wave of the good stuff – grapefruit, passion fruit, orange peel, pine needles, cannabis aniseed, candied lemon and some resinous characters to boot. A delicately dry and grainy malt structure holding it all together. Looking good.
Excellent continuation on to the palate. Fresh, crisp and piney with that grainy malt there at the base. Flashes of herbs and grassy hop flow through the mid and lead to a sharp and ultra bitter finish with lingering grapefruit and orange peel on the back palate.
The texture is dry and frothy with discernible alcohol (6.9% ABV) warmth and aggressive bitterness. Medium body.
Much better from DC! Don’t know what it was about the Lupulin Effect series but they have nothing on this. It hits those classic American IPA notes with precision. It’s crisp, piney, clean and aggressively hopped but there’s enough malt to contain it. Two thumbs up from us.

Deep Creek Brewing Co ‘Lupulin Effect’ Red IPA

Rating:

21559119_749985445185603_2096519906645118333_n“Cannabis and hops are closely related. Both come from the Cannabinaceae family. They do share some physical traits, such as appearance and similar aromas. However, they differ on the chemical level. Both produce terpenes; cannabis terpenes are psychoactive where hops terpenes are purely for flavour, aroma and bitterness. Hops have been shown to help in relaxation, called the lupulin effect when consumed at moderate levels.”

Served in an IPA glass. We’re met with a reasonably clear amber hue that offers a soft copper tint. The creamy head swells to about a thumb before retracting to a thin sheet. Very healthy lace work following it down.
Smells fresh and very hoppy. Lots of luscious green leaves, pine, mango, paw paw, pineapple and a fair whack of booze. The malt profile is sweet, a little syrupy and caramelised. Getting this subtle scent of red peppers coming through too. Interesting touch. Not a bad aroma we must say.
Taste is following the nose. Seeing those hops just dominate the malts a bit. Getting a burst of citrus upfront but it’s certainly adjusted by the sweet caramel malts. The booze goes a little unchecked through the mid and gets intensified by a sharp citric bitterness which leads to a firm and warming finish.
Medium body with a creamy texture that coats the palate. The 7% ABV overplays its hand and the bitterness is quite aggressive. Slightly unbalanced.
We’ve been a little disappointed with this brewery to be honest. The artwork on their cans is very eye catching but the beer itself isn’t bringing it home for us. The balance isn’t quite right and the alcohol shows through a bit too much for our liking. Not a bad drop, just a tad rough around the edges.

Deep Creek Brewing Co. ‘Lupulin Effect’ Double IPA

Rating:

21752172_748794698638011_8064911528735760414_n“Cannabis and hops are closely related. Both come from the Cannabinaceae family. They do share some physical traits, such as appearance and similar aromas. However, they differ on the chemical level. Both produce terpenes; cannabis terpenes are psychoactive where hops terpenes are purely for flavour, aroma and bitterness. Hops have been shown to help in relaxation, called the lupulin effect when consumed at moderate levels.”

Served in an IPA glass. Clear golden/amber in appearance. Not even our aggressive pour could churn up any real head as it produced a flimsy cap that peels back to a ring in seconds. Minimal lace. We’re getting a slightly dank and piney profile on the nose. Plenty of herbaceous notes – nettle leaf, tea and vines with that distinct Nelson Sauvin scent of white grapes. Very luscious and green which seems to be a characteristic of NZ IPA’s. Very mild malt presence – biscuity if we had to say anything.
Quite a unique set of flavours upfront. Persimmon is the most dominant but we pick up hints of gooseberry, lime juice and pine needle. Dank herbal hops, rotting leaves and pithy citrus set up for a long and acrid finish with loads of sting in the tail.
The texture is prickly and at times a little too astringent. Very unbalanced and hard to finish to be brutally honest. We get that it’s a DIPA but jeez a bit more malt sweetness would take the edge off of those hops.
This one started with a lot of promise but by the end it was too boozy (8.5%), too bitter and too unbalanced. Where they are doing well is the artwork on the can…very eye catching. But we can’t shirk the issue, it is what’s inside that counts the most and this slightly missed the mark for us.

Six String Brewing Dark Red IPA

Rating:

21558882_749149955269152_1301395100951329021_n“It’s not red. Or is it? What at first seems like another easy classification as a black IPA gets mighty confused when you hold it up to the light because, yes, there’s definitely redness there. And as there would be because the recipe is based very loosely on the West Coast USA style Red Ale, tweaked and nudged until it’s arguably become Six String’s signature beer.”

Served in an IPA glass. We’re met with a seriously deep amber almost burgundy hue with a monstrous three and a half finger head on top. The foam slowly recedes and leaves a smattering of lace in its wake.
The nose offers everything you’d expect from agood red IPA – dank and heady hops but beautifully contained by a rich and sweet caramel malt base. Oodles of juicy fruits, bitter citrus and grassy/piney hop but just as much toffee, treacle and toasty malt to balance it out. Impressive.
Excellent transition on to the palate. Spiked with bitter citrus and pine resin but again it’s smoothed over by those sweet and silky malts. Some tropical fruit appears before the bitter citrus (grapefruit, orange peel etc) rolls in to the long and slightly dry finish which presents that recurring balance well on the rear.
Nice and full in the mouth. Smooth and creamy but also a touch dry with assertive bitterness (51 IBU).
We honestly can’t believe it has taken us so long to review this beer! We’ve been smashing them for years now and only just realised about a week ago that we haven’t reviewed it. Well, now we have and it’s just as we remember it – big, hoppy but not in your face. Well balanced by the malts with a delicious sweetness from go to woe. Solid offering.

Pact Beer Co. ‘100 Acres’ IPA

Rating:

21463195_748794418638039_4809311117758997440_n“Drawing equal cues from both the English and American IPA traditions, the 100 Acres IPA exudes a beautiful bouquet of clean pine and floral aromas with a firm bitterness that excites without overwhelming the palate.”

Served in an IPA glass. It hits the glass with a honey amber hue and seals off with a thumb of tightly beaded foam. Good retention and good lace sticking to the glass as it subsides.
There’s nothing fancy going on with the aroma but it still manages to offer a super clean pine note with heady floral accents, freshly cut grass, tangerine, passion fruit, orange blossom and soft grapefruit undertones. It’s also balanced quite nicely with hints of caramel and oaty biscuits adding to the allure.
The flavour serves up a delicious and well balanced fusion of piney and slightly herbal hops along with semi sweet biscuit malts. An assertive bitterness forms early in the mid which emphasises the pithy grapefruit which carries in to the piney and slightly resinous finish. Good duration on the back end too, this soft citric bitterness really goes the distance.
It’s dry and a little prickly but ultimately approachable. The 6% ABV doesn’t overplay its hand and she’s hit that perfect amount of co2.
As we pointed to earlier in the review, it’s not a flashy IPA it just quietly goes about its business and ticks all the boxes in the process. Quite the surprise (and sessional) package here. Fine drop from this Canberran brewery.

Stone Brewing ‘Ghost Hammer’ IPA

Rating:

21317914_744964609021020_4617824783405349794_n“Most areas of the brewery are dark or in shadows. Throughout the night the cellars resonate with the occasional knocking of expanding and contracting pipes. It can be a bit spooky to hear the brewery creak and groan as if possessed by a spirit randomly knocking about with a mallet. This IPA, liberally hopped with Loral™, honors our intrepid overnight team by naming it after their mischievous poltergeist companion – the Ghost Hammer.”

Served in an IPA glass. We see a hazy golden orange hue that’s covered by a thumb of puffy white foam. Head retention is good and lacing is even better.
Most notable on the nose would be its citrus and floral orange blossom characters but there is also a healthy dose of fruits like pineapple, blood orange and melon. Getting a kind of candied lemon scent along with pine, subtle spice and a light biscuity/honey malt at the base.
The flavour takes on a bit of a pithy and somewhat acidic grapefruit flavour upfront. A bit of that floral and candied orange getting amongst it as it moves in to a spicy note through the mid. Dry, a little acrid and bitter in the finish with a lingering grapefruit flavour in the tail.
Crisp, snappy and sharp in the mouth. The 6.7% ABV creeps up as the 56 IBU is quite well presented. Moderate body and co2.
Another fine offering from this super consistent brewery. It’s a slight step up from your intermediate style IPA’s without being a full on palate wrecker. Quality stuff – what we’ve come to expect from Stone.

Cigar City Brewing ‘Jai Alai’ IPA

Rating:

21314444_743533495830798_2335983847170810809_n“Jai Alai, a game native to the Basque region of Spain, is played on a court called a fronton. Jai Alai players attempt to catch a ball using a curved mitt whilst the ball travels at speeds up to 188mph! Proving they have a sense of humor the Spanish dubbed this game, with its ball traveling at racecar speeds, “the merry game.” Tampa was once home to a bustling Jai Alai fronton but sadly all that remains of Jai Alai in the Tampa Bay area is this India Pale Ale that we brew in tribute to the merry game. The India Pale Ale style of beer has its roots in the ales sent from England to thirsty British troops in India during the 18th century.”

Served in an IPA glass. Amber to orange in colour with a thumb of extremely well retained head perched on top. Superb lace decoration clinging to the glass as we imbibe.
The aroma is oh-so-American. Gushing with candied orange, tangerine, lemon drops, lavender, pine, cannabis and a subtle bready malt structure at the base. We just love these traditional American IPA’s as they take us back to the glory days back before your NEIPA’s and monolithic triples and quads. Just a good and honest IPA aroma.
Neat transition on to the palate. There’s a big impression of candied citrus, pine resins, ruby grapefruit and herbal/grassy hop that stretches well in to the mid, picking up tropical fruit and earthy floral notes in the process. The back end anchors on the grassy/resinous hop characters with a long and dry finish.
She holds a nice moderate body with a creamy and somewhat effervescent texture. The 70 IBU forms late and the 7.5% ABV is dangerously well concealed, kind of creeps up on you.
Brilliant IPA. One of those beers that evokes old memories from just one whiff. It’s IPA’s like this that made the style a symbol of a revolution the world over. Kudos Cigar City this is an excellent drop.

Capital Brewing ‘Evil Eye’ Red IPA

Rating:

21192932_742410259276455_1272184923769395229_n“A BIG & BOLD RED IPA NAMED AFTER AN OLD TREE STUMP TATTOOED WITH AN EVIL EYE, ONCE LOCATED ON LAKE GEORGE JUST OUTSIDE THE CAPITAL. WITH A FORWARD HOP PROFILE, IT’S FULL BODIED, HAS FRUITY NOTES, PACKED WITH FLAVOUR AND AROMA AND HAS A BALANCED DRY FINISH. WE’VE USED FRESH BATLOW GROWN US CASCADE HOPS FOR EXTRA HOP KICK.”

 Served in an IPA glass. She pours a clear, deep and bold amber with a soft cognac tint. It generates a puffy two finger head that settles to a thick overlay. Laced well.
This smells absolutely divine. The balance they’ve struck between the super sweet malts and the fruity hops is superb. Loads of caramel, toffee and butterscotch erupt out of the glass with the tropical stonefruits following close behind. A delicate hint of treacle and pine needle come through as the caramel malts fill it all out. Brilliant aroma.
The flavour backs up what the aroma is saying….big impressions of caramel malt sweetness, toffee and butterscotch with a healthy showing of tropical fruits such as pineapple, rockmelon and paw paw. A hint of citric acidity kicks in midway adding a grapefruit bitterness before it rounds off on a bitter yet sweet finish with excellent length on the rear.
It’s dry and bitter (60 IBU) but also quite gelatinous in texture. Medium body and co2.
Look out Bentspoke there’s a new player in town! What a way to kick off proceedings with this new Canberran brewery. This red IPA has it all – exceptional balance, big aroma and flavour and dangerous session ability with a relatively low ABV (6%) to boot. Solid offering here folks.

5 Barrel Brewing American IPA

Rating:

20994112_739838442866970_8358594505077499203_n“India Pale Ales (IPAs) highlight the amazingly varied world of hops. Our West Coast American style IPA has little to no malt character, allowing the great mix of American hops to shine. Judicious layering of hops provides a complex set of piny, zesty, fruity flavours. Despite being nice and strong, our IPA maintains a great balance and sessionability. The dry body carries the firm bitterness and hop flavours through to finish.”

Served in an IPA glass. This seasonal release offers a bright amber appearance with a thumb of stubborn foam perched on top. A thick and soapy lace is left clinging to the glass as it ebbs.
Nice and zesty on the nose with an emphasis on grapefruit, orange peel and pineapple. Getting a healthy dose of pine and passion fruit along with more subtle scents of rotting leaves and berries. Very shy malt profile – semi sweet and caramelly if anything. Not bad.
The taste is a lot like the aroma. It’s zesty and citrusy with little malt to counter balance. Flavours of earthy herbs and pine roll in to a spicy hop bitterness through the middle. Orange peel and subtle grassy notes prelude the long, dry and super bitter finish.
The mouth feel is crisp and dry with a bit of prickly warmth from the 7% ABV coming through. The 50 IBU is well presented with a drawn out bitterness in the tail. Moderate body, medium co2.
It’s a good IPA but it falls short of being memorable. Considering the delicate malt profile we were hoping to see a lot more character out of the hops. For us, American IPAs are brimming with an assortment of fruits, spice and pine with just enough malt to add that crucial balance. This IPA has glimmers of it….but not enough. Still, not bad.

Feral Brewing ‘Finn Diesel’ IPA

Rating:

20638168_732747673576047_594292114244897072_n“Inhale the intoxicating exhaust of pine, perfume and citrus as this rust bucket of a beer shudders and backfires sweet, heady fumes deep into the atmosphere. Late kettle hopping fuels bitterness as the strong malt body jump starts the palate to leave your senses understeered and overheated. This is a death trap from another time, passed over the pits, free to once again pollute cruise the mean suburban streets.”

Served in an IPA glass. Finn displays a lovely amber conplexion with a well retained thumb of finely beaded foam over the top. With that comes a healthy lace that clings to the glass as we imbibe.
The aroma is super fruity, piney and kinda sweet with an abundance of citrus character on offer. Getting a strong showing of pineapple and mango on the flank with quite a hefty caramel malt sweetness at the base. Smells fresh, fruity and well balanced. Bang on.
The palate follows the nose with precision. Those delicious caramel malts anchor down with all of the juicy tropical and citrus fruits dancing on the tongue. Certainly not an aggressive bitterness but we do pick up a drying effect midway. That unwavering malt sweetness re-enters but eventually lays down for a slightly bitter finish that shows pine, grapefruit and herbs on the rear.
Medium body. Chewy but ultimately smooth and well rounded in texture. 67 IBU is nicely concealed. Very drinkable.
It is reassuring to see Feral release another top shelf IPA. Besides Tusk, their last couple of IPA’s have been a bit ordinary so we welcome this tasty drop with open arms. Without a doubt an IPA we’d return to.

Fixation Brewing ‘Squish’ Citrus IPA

Rating:

20479682_730977807086367_976370330660055163_n“FIXATION SQUISH IS A NEW WORLD IPA THAT BLENDS FRESH FRUIT AND HOP CHARACTER FOR A BEAUTIFULLY AROMATIC AND FLAVOURSOME ADVENTURE. THE SQUISH SHOWS A CLEAN BITTERNESS, WITH AROMAS OF FRESH ORANGE AND TROPICAL FRUITS. IT POURS A HAZY PALE GOLD. THE HOP DRIVEN AROMA IS TURNED UP A NOTCH BY FRESH CITRUS NOTES PROVIDED BY ADDITIONS OF BLOOD ORANGE AND GRAPEFRUIT. SQUISH FINISHES SUPER CLEAN AND INVITES ANOTHER SIP!

Served in an IPA glass. Pours a pale golden amber with a slight haze. It constructs a finger of well retained head that deposits a fine lace on the glass.
The nose is bursting with orange citrus character. Ruby grapefruit, orange, candied lemon and tangerine mainly but there are also hints of pine resin, passion fruit and pineapple coming through as well. Not a huge malt presence but a dry and husky accent is there at the base. Super summery aroma here.
Seriously smooth and silky in the mouth. Light-moderate body with a subtle bitterness developing late. She only weighs in at 5.9% ABV so it’s a really approachable IPA.
We get a really nice and refreshing splash of mixed citrus on the fore. All of those fruits from the aroma carry into the flavour with the softest hint of pine and grainy malt creeping in. Bit of an underwhelming finish as it appears to bottom out without a great deal of length.
Look, it’s not the most amazing IPA we’ve tried but it’s aromatic, tasty and sessional so it ticks most of the boxes. It is a little too delicate and could do with a bit more body and a bit of extra oomph but other than that it is a good entry level IPA. Not bad.

 

Pirate Life Mosaic IPA

Rating:

image“Some of you may have noticed that Pirate Life has a sneaky habit of releasing new beers in a flurry. It’s been a while since the Pirate Life IPA, Hopco NZ Pale and Golden Era Golden Ale hit shelves last year and this week we have two more for you. First cab off the rank….Piate Life Mosaic IPA.”

Served in an IPA glass. She offers a bright amber glow with excellent clarity. A solid one finger head is formed which holds together well and posts a consistent set of rings down the walls of the glass.
Sometimes these single hop IPA’s can get a little one dimensional but the fruity, citrusy and piney characters of this world class hop will never become monotonous for us. These hallmark aromas of grapefruit, candied lemon, pine and orange peel balance out with a super subtle malt profile which displays crusty bread and biscuit notes. Simple but so aromatic.
The texture is crisp and clean with moderate-medium body. Nice and vibrant co2 with a somewhat restrained bitterness in the swallow. Very accommodating for a beer hitting the scales at 7% ABV.
Just like the aroma the flavour is dominated by these delicious mosaic hops. A slightly heavier pronunciation on the grapefruit with hints of orange peel, passion fruit and pine resin weaved through. The malt profile is a bit shy, a little bready if anything. Well balanced finish here – definitely citrusy with a mild lingering bitterness in the close.
Besides from a few one-off GABS entries we haven’t properly reviewed a PL beer for quite some time. This IPA has some uncanny similarities to Firestone Walker’s IPA’s in the sense of its super clean and honest aromas and flavours. We knew these guys were progressing but we may have underestimated the trajectory! A fine offering here.

Bacchus Brewing Co ‘Blood Buccaneer’ Double Red IPA

Rating:

image“A double version of our crimson corsair. Same recipe, just mashed at a lower temperature for a slightly drier body and higher ABV. The beer still has a lovely rich malt character balanced by the tropical American hops. Blood Buccaneer was aptly another nickname for the star wars character crimson corsair, a delphidian pirate who wore a distinctive red kaleesh mask and reputed as being the region’s best pirate.”

Served in an IPA glass. The attractive scarlet red body is capped by a big and foamy three finger head. It holds together incredibly well allowing a thick lace to stick to the glass.
The aroma is big and juicy with those magnificent malts only just eclipsing the fruity hops. It just exudes elegance with sweet sugary notes of caramel, toffee and butterscotch and the tropical mango, lychee, papaya and rockmelon tucked in right behind. Something a little piney and resinous in here too. Superb.
Smooth and somewhat gelatinous in texture but the 9.1% ABV presents itself quite directly. Body is nice and full with mild-moderate Co2.
Bit of a role reversal on the palate. That sweet malt flavour certainly comes through but the tropical fruits and bitter citrus fuse with the hop bitterness and dominate the fore. The malts progress nicely through the mid but is met with an assertive hop bitterness that rounds off on a dry, citric finish that provides good endurance on the back end.
We’ve had a couple beers from Bacchus recently that have missed the mark but this release reminds us why we had them as one of our best of 2016. This imperial red IPA is balanced almost to perfection with a big and warming booze to back it up. Loads of super sweet malts and tropical fruity hops for the senses. Solid offering.