Bacchus Brewing Co. ‘Challenger’ IPA


16831128_649892981861517_8746050291921021064_n“Strong English style India Pale Ale (IPA) displaying all the character of the IPA’s of yesteryear. Rich malt profile with characteristic Challenger hop flavours – spicy straw-like with marmalade undertones. Reminds me of marmalade on toast. Delicious.”

Served in an IPA glass. She pours a bright amber complexion with lovely transparency. It holds a solid three finger head that gradually recedes to a thick overlay, weaving a healthy lace down the walls of the glass.
We don’t see much of the Challenger hop variety in Australia. It’s a popular hop in the UK and we encountered it a lot in our travels to England a few years back. It’s spicy, floral and at times sweet and it has been used to perfection here. As every good English IPA should, she’s got a hefty malt bill coming through with a big impression of caramel and hints of toast at its core. We’re absolutely loving this.
Nice and full-ish in the mouth with bouncy Co2. The 50 IBU is modest, much more active on the back palate if anything. Quite pleasant to drink actually.
Really getting a nice fruity/citrusy tang upfront. As it gels with the sweeter malts it begins to develop that jammy marmalade flavour that’s described on the bottle. The spicy hops start to take shape in the middle as they assemble the long, dry and slightly warming finish.
We may be a nation of highly hopped West coast IPA lovers but there is so much to like and respect about English IPA. This particular representation is super smooth, well balanced and incredibly approachable considering its weight (6.8%). In the fine tuned words of a Manc it’d go something like this…”alright mate, that’s well good innit!”