873. Sierra Nevada/Tree House – East Meets West IPA

873. Sierra Nevada/Tree House - East Meets West IPAIt’s been a crazy past several weeks. We went on vacation to Florida and when we got back, the kids started their school activities – band, cross country, soccer, etc. So with the start of school, it’s been a bit nuts around here. In addition, we attended the Great Taste of the Midwest beer festival in Madison, WI, and Bruegala Beer Festival here locally in Normal, IL the past two weekends. So we’ve had our fill in beer. Rather than do any reviews, I decided just to enjoy the festivals and not worry about taking notes or doing any reviews.

This beer was sent to me a few weeks back by Sierra Nevada to promote their Beer Camp Around the World series. Of all of the beers in this 12 pack, this is the one I’ve looked forward to the most. I’ve heard a ton about Tree House Brewing, but have yet to be able to try any of their beers. The can says, “In just a few short years, Tree House has made a big impact on the beer scene with their approach to the IPA – low bitterness, intense juicy hop flavor and unfiltered haze. As fellow lovers of the IPA, we combined our styles – the classic American IPA malt body and the New England approach to hopping – resulting in lightly bitter, unfiltered beer with huge hop flavor.”

Location: Poured into a TEKU pint glass at my home in Bloomington, IL.

Numbers: 7% ABV, 40 IBUs, 16.1 degrees Plato OG, 3.2 degrees Plato FG, ~220 Calories

Ingredients: Malts: Two-row pale, Caramel, Acidulated; Bittering hops: Simcoe; Finishing hops: Citra, Mosaic

Appearance & Aroma: It’s straw-golden in color and pretty hazy. It has a good amount of carbonation in it, giving it a bright, fluffy-white head that had incredible retention. It had a citrusy hop aroma, with some orange, pineapple, and mango notes.

Taste & Feel: The body is medium-full and the mouthfeel is smooth with a mix of creaminess and light hop oiliness. The flavor up front is a citrusy-orange hop juiciness. In the middle, the maltiness comes through with a little bit of bitterness, which grows rapidly in the finish. The finish has a streak of bitterness behind it, but it’s a juicy burst of citrusy hop flavors with orange, mango, and grapefruit-pineapple flavors. The citrusy hop flavor and bitterness lasts for a minute or two in the aftertaste.

Food Pairing: There are a lot of citrusy flavors to this IPA, and I’d pair it with something like a strong seasoned tuna or salmon, and I think it would also go great with fish tacos. With the pineapple citrus flavors, I’d probably also try to pair this with a pineapple-pork type dish as well.

Overall Impression: This beer definitely pushes the hop flavors forward over the bitterness. The bitterness is still there, but it’s really the citrusy flavors and juiciness which stand out. It’s quite juicy, and the mix of citrusy flavors ranges from orange up front to grapefruit and pineapple in the finish. It’s smooth without the sometimes harsh hop bitterness, which made it a very drinkable IPA. The citrusy flavors would be perfect for the beach (or maybe I’m just missing the beach, having been there a few weeks ago). Overall, it was definitely a great beer with a lot of flavor.

My Rating: ★★★½☆

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Author: kkozlen

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