Five Barrel ‘Gnome Project’ NZ IPA


“First and foremost, New Zealand IPAs are made at least, in part with New Zealand hops. They are similar to American west coast IPAs although where they differ is they are usually more balanced than American IPAs and the bitterness is usually less pronounced. They are often lighter in colour with a good malt body that balances out the hops. The New Zealand hops give NZ IPAs a more tropical note with floral, fruity, stonefruit, white grape and sulphur/Diesel like aromas. Best drunk fresh!”

Glassware: IPA.

Appearance: Nice bold amber pour with a small amount of suspended sediment floating around. Good head formation, swelling to two fingers before gradually retracting. Healthy lace as we go.

Aroma: NZ IPA’s would have to be one of our favourite sub genres. There’s just something so uniquely fresh and green about the hops grown over the ditch. We pick up heady scents of zesty lime/juice, sappy resin, yellow grapefruit, white grapes, pine forest and that guava/lychee-esque sweetness we find in some Sauvignon Blanc. Well balanced toasty and honey malt profile as well.

Flavour: Very resinous…plus hints of catty-ness show up a bit. Getting the semi sweet honey malts more than we were on the nose. Fresh green herbs, zesty lime, white grapes and yellow grapefruit developing midway then setting up for a slightly bitter, resinous and herbaceous finish which endures.

Mouthfeel: Pretty smooth and oily upfront then drying out post swallow. Medium body and Co2. The 6.8% ABV is well behaved.

Overall: The basic summary is it’s good but it’s not great. Nothing really stands out other than the feature NZ hops. Not bad.