Victory ‘HopDevil’ IPA


image“The mythical HopDevil resides in the lore of farmers. Our HopDevil is the real deal. Bold, spicy and menacingly delicious. He’s the product of distinctive American hops and meticulous craftsmanship. Arising from the heady wilds of our hopback and gently tamed with lime, this Devil makes a great companion”.

We were pleasantly surprised to stumble upon this when we last visited Dan Murphy’s. It’s great to see a commercial bottle shop stocking good quality American breweries. Served in an IPA glass. The otherwise clear amber pour is marred by a heavy presence of suspended sediment, essentially handing it a cloudy appearance. A short white cap forms but steadily reduces to a thin film over the top. Nice, spotted lacing is being omitted as we imbibe. It’s actually very interesting that they name this beer the ‘hop devil’ as there is a robust malt profile emanating. There certainly are some herbal aromatics/spicy tea leaf characters in here along with wafts of eucalyptus, passion fruit, lychee, stewed fruits and mango, but a big malt sweetness really fills it out with its syrupy notes of honey and caramel. Gorgeous. In the mouth it’s well weighted with a smooth, velvety texture. Lightly acidic with a restrained sharpness from the ABV (6.7%). The Co2 levels are moderate, allowing the assertive bitterness to flow through. The fore flavour really takes on the spicy hops. Tea leaf, eucalyptus and a refreshing splash of citrus lead into a bitter mid palate. That malt sweetness really nullifies the dryness well as rich notes of honey develop before a mild, bitter finish compliments this delicious IPA. Reasonable length too, a pleasant bitterness lingers along with a lovely syrupy sweetness between sips. Wow, the balance that has been struck here is amazing. Excellent layers of malt sweetness really pull the hops into line without affecting the punch and astringency they bring. This is a brilliant IPA, one of those rare and sessional IPA’s that still pack an arsenal of flavours and aromas. Solid offering.