My sister recently went on a trip to Asheville, NC, and called me several times to see what beers from there I’d tried (or haven’t tried). It turns out that she was getting a bunch of beers together to give me for my birthday last weekend. When my dad came to visit, he brought a huge cooler full of beers and growlers my sister had picked up on her trip. Tonight we’re in the process of packing for our week-long vacation to Disney and Destin, Florida, and I needed a beer to chill out while getting myself and everyone packed. I figured a double IPA would do the trick, and didn’t want to let this growler sitting around for much longer (for freshness).
Location: Poured from the growler into a snifter glass at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 8% ABV, ~ 290 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It’s golden in color, with a slight amber-orange hue, and it’s very clear. There was a small head, which fell to a creamy ring around the edge of the glass, and left a small amount of lacing as I drank it. There was a good amount of piney-grassy and citrusy orange-grapefruit hop aroma.
Taste & Feel: The body was solidly medium with a crisp, but lightly oily mouthfeel. Up front, there was a hint of bready maltiness, well-covered by a good amount of slightly sweet citrusy hop flavors. The hop flavors intensified throughout, both in sweetness and bitterness. The bitterness peaked in the finish, with mostly citrusy hops, but some hints of pine and grass. The citrusy hop bitterness lasted for several minutes in the aftertaste.
Food Pairing: This is a pretty intensely hopped beer with lots of citrusy hop flavors and only hints of maltiness. With big hoppy, citrusy, double IPAs, I like to cut through it with something like a thick, juicy cheeseburger, adding something like a pepperjack cheese to counter the citrusy flavors.
Overall Impression: This was an east-coast version of a west-coast double IPA, with lots of citrusy hop flavors and bitterness. While there was a bit of maltiness detectable, it’s focus was showcasing the citrusy hops. I like that there was a bit of hop complexity with some grassy and piney hops in the background. Overall, it was a good, strong, display of hops, and I enjoyed it enough to finish the growler in a couple days on my own. Based on this brew, I look forward to trying the smaller growlers of brew my sister gave me from Wicked Weed.