401. Rock Bottom North Indianapolis – Merry Prankster Red IPA

Rock Bottom North Indianapolis - Merry Prankster Red IPAWe’re in Indianapolis for the weekend, celebrating my wife’s birthday by taking the kids to the Indianapolis Children’s Museum.  We had a great lunch at Bazbeaux’s Pizza, along with a few local craft beers, and then a great day at the museum.  We checked into our hotel and watched the my Mizzou Tigers take on the kansas jayhawks.  After a tough game, the Tigers lost and it was time to find dinner at a place where I could drown my sorrows.  Of all the beers on tap, this looked the most interesting to me, and it had just been brewed on January 25.

Location: On tap at Rock Botton Brewery in North Indianapolis, IN, served in a large glass mug.

Numbers: 7.8% ABV, 17.5 SG, 2.7 FG, ~ 235 Calories

Appearance & Aroma: It’s obviously red in color and is fairly clear.  It started with a nice creamy tan head on it, which faded, but still left some nice lacing on the glass.  There’s a nice, earthy and grassy hop aroma with a hint of maltiness.

Taste & Feel: The body was medium to full and it had a creamy mouthfeel with just a bit of carbonation crispiness.  Up front, there was a little bit of a toasty caramel maltiness, followed by a decent earthy and grassy hop flavor in middle.  The hop bitterness grew in the finish, and lingered for a little bit in the aftertaste.

Food Pairing: It went nicely with my fish tacos, adding a nice complex bitterness to the salty and spicy tacos.  A flavorful beer, this would stand up to some pretty robust tasting meals.  Ideally, I think it would be great with a rack of BBQ ribs, as the toasty, caramel flavors up front would complement it well up front, and then the hop bitterness would add another dimension to the combination.

Overall Impression: Overall, I thought this was a pretty nice, drinkable beer.  It wasn’t until after several sips that I noticed a gentle warning in the back of my throat from the 7.8% ABV.  I enjoyed the big malt backbone, accompanied by the earthy and grassy hop flavors.  If you get a chance to try this one, I recommend it.

My Rating: ★★★★☆

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Author: Kevin

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