It’s a lazy Saturday and I thought I’d grab something big and tasty out of the beer fridge. This was the first thing to grab my eye. It wasn’t marked with a date, and I can’t remember exactly when I bought it, but it can’t be more than a few months old.
Location: Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass from the 22oz bottle at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 8% ABV, 102 IBUs, 1.085 OG, 250 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It’s got a bright golden color and is very clear. It’s got quite a bit of carbonation in it, leaving a very thin creamy head that left some nice lacing behind. The aroma is a mix of citrus, grassy, and piney hops.
Taste & Feel: The body is medium-to-full and the mouthfeel is smooth and slightly creamy. The flavors up front are bready and malty, with a little bit of sweet honey. The flavors morph from sweet to bitter throughout, finishing with a good amount on piney, resin-like bitterness and flavor. The bitterness lasts for a few minutes in the aftertaste, as it coats my mouth.
Food Pairing: At over a hundred IBUs, this beer has a good amount of hop bitterness and flavor. Therefore, I’d probably go with a flavorful meal to combat all of the hoppiness. For me, I like pairing big hop;y beers like this with a thick, juicy burger, making for both a flavorful bite and sip.
Overall Impression: At 102 IBUs, I was expecting it to be over-the-top bitter. However, it had a very solid malt backbone and a good hop flavor and bitterness. While the bitterness was a bit more than the hop flavor, I enjoyed both. Admittedly, I’m a hophead, so I enjoyed this one.