I’ve been going into the beer fridge the last few days, and trying to pull out older beers. I picked up a four pack of these cans during my vacation in Florida, the first week in August. It was a great beer, and I especially enjoyed having this big beer in cans, so I could enjoy it on the beach. I was saving this one for a more formal review, and tonight is the night.
Location: Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass from the can at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 8% ABV, 85 IBUs, ~ 260 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It’s golden orange in color and a bit hazy. It’s got to send creamy head on it with some soapy bubbles. The aroma is a mix of hoppiness with earthiness, grapefruit, and resiny-pine smells.
Taste & Feel: The body is full and the mouthfeel is creamy and smooth. There’s a bready and honey-like malt flavor up front, but very quickly the hop flavors start to kick in. The middle has a citrus and resin-like hop flavor to it with still a good amount of malty sweetness to match. However, the finish is all hops, both in flavor and bitterness, with plenty of citrusy grapefruit and piney resin flavors. The hop flavors seemed to outweigh the the bitterness, suggesting a lot of late addition hops. The hop oils seem to stick to the inside of your mouth and last for a long time in the aftertaste.
Food Pairing: This is a big hoppy beer with lots of citrusy and resiny hop flavors, but matched with a good sized malt backbone. It takes a big, flavorful meal to match up to this beer. I’d go with something like a thick, juicy burger, letting the bold flavors of each overtake one another sip after bite.
Overall Impression: Admittedly, I’m a bit of a hop head, and this is certainly a hop head’s kind of beer. It’s got a huge amount of hop flavor, mixing both citrusy and resiny hops, but it’s also got a solid malt backbone with a good full, creamy body. Overall, it’s got a great hoppy flavor that sticks with you and a malt backbone that makes this tall boy a meal for a hop head like me.