Archive for the ‘Imperial India Pale Ale’ Category

Hop Wallop by Victory Brewing Company

It is hard for me to believe that at this time next week, my journey will be over. It will come to an end on November 28th but until then I have, including today’s beer, 6 left.  Lets get drinking!!!

Beer #360 is Hop Wallop by Victory Brewing Company.  This American Double or Imperial IPA has an ABV of 8.5% and is brewed in Downingtown, Pennsylvania.

Into another Pennsylvania brewers, Sly Fox, pint glass this went.  The color of this beer was a clear orange or golden amber.  It had a very thin white head. The nose smelled heavy and syrupy with grapefruit and bready malts.  Hops up front with grapefruit & orange peel (basically a nice citrus fruity overall flavor) and then it gets malty and sweet with caramel mostly.  The body is pretty heavy, sticky & syrupy…it coats as it soothes…and the carbonation is pretty low. Nice and smooth with moderate bitterness coupled with the ABV hidden really well, makes this very drinkable.

I make no bones about…IPAs and DIPAs are probably my favorite styles of beer and this didn’t disappoint.  An excellent brew from Victory!

And then there were 5…

Rating: A+

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Burton Baton by Dogfish Head

I took my wife on a 10 mile rail-trail ride on the old mountain bikes to the Columbia Trail in High Bridge, New Jersey.  The Columbia trail stretches for about 16 miles and uses the an old rail line that was running freight trains from 1876 until 1976.  The South Branch of the Raritan River parallels the trail for most of its length.  It was a beautiful ride winding our way up to Califon, New Jersey and the old train station there.  There is really something quite nice about the forest in the autumn in the North East…even in good old New Jersey…no it is not all smokestacks and strip malls…contrary to popular opinion.  The leaves crunching under our tires, the smell of the woods in general…beautiful.  We both worked up quite an appetite, so pizza it was.  Brick oven, Pizza & Pasta in Manville, Chef’s Special (love the garlic)…doesn’t get any better.  And my beer on tap for this evening?

How about another brew from Dogfish Head from Delaware.  Beer #328 is Burton Baton which happens to be an American Double IPA or an Imperial IPA.  Heavy on the ABV, 10%, that seems par for the course with Dogfish.  Interesting to note is that this is a blend of an American IPA and an English-style Old Ale.

Appearance – A clear amber with a one finger-width off-white head that left some really nice lacing.

Nose – Caramel malts and citrus…grapefruit mostly.  It had a sweet aroma to it.  A bit bready…like crust on Wonder bread of all things.  I ate that stuff like it was going out of style when I was a kid.

Taste – Starts with a bitter bite then mellows into sweet caramel malts.  Pine and grapefruit then take over.  The oak this is aged with shows through with a nice vanilla flavor that is pretty recognizable.  The alcohol is hidden really well and doesn’t really start to show itself until the beer warms up.

Mouthfeel – Medium body starting to tip the scales towards heavy.  Not overly carbonated.  It was a bit harsh feeling.

Overall – This is another really good beer from Dogfish Head and a nice representation of an American DIPA.  I know, I seem to say that quite often…but they do brew some really, really good beers.  I enjoyed this once quite a bit at a slower pace of course because of the ABV.  A really nice beer to end a really nice day.  Till we meet, or I blog again…

Rating: B+

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Double IPA by Stoudt's Brewing Company

TGIF…and boy do I feel like I could use a weekend right about now.

Beer #320 is Double IPA by Stoudt’s Brewing Company brewed in Adamstown in the neighboring state of Pennsylvania.  This American DIPA or Imperial IPA has large ABV of 10%.

I like the ANTMO style of doing the review…so I will continue.

Apperance – Cloudy orange amber with a slight off-white head.

Nose – Big & malty caramel struck me first.  Pineapple juice, honey, herbs & alcohol make up  the rest of the aromas.

Taste – Nice and sweet with pineapple juice like flavor up front.  Then it gets malty with the sweetness of the caramel.  It had a pleasant bitterness…not too much or too little.  There was a very slight alcohol taste that got a bit stronger as it warmed up.

Mouthfeel – Fairly heavy body, a bit thick & a bit syrupy.  Very smooth with it being a bit under carbonated.  The ABV is hidden nicely.

Overall – A very good DIPA.  Not the best I have had but I enjoyed it.  I liked the more noticeable pineapple flavor…it was quite the change of pace from the typical grapefruit.

Rating: B+

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Bigger Hop by East End Brewing Company

Pittsburgh, the home of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is also home to East End Brewing Company.  I find myself in the great “Steel City” this weekend for a wedding.  I did a little research and found East End Brewing Company is just a hop skip and a jump from my hotel.  Off I went to pick up a growler, a pint glass, and two 1 quart 1.8 fl oz of some of their finest beer.

Tonights beer, #292, is Bigger Hop by East End Brewing Company.  This American Double IPA or Imperial IPA has an ABV of 9%.

Into my newly purchased East End Brewing Company pint glass went this hazy gold with a slight hint of orange colored brew.  The off-white head was magnificent, large and fluffy.  It left some awesome lacing on the glass.  The nose was grapefruit juice, tropical fruit, and it was quite malty.  The grapefruit hit me first in the taste…coming off slightly sweet.  There was a nice bready malty thing going on throughout the flavor profile also.  It had quite the bitter bite…which I love.  The body was medium leaning towards heavy and sticky.  It had a lower amount of carbonation and was bordering on being smooth.  The alcohol was hidden nicely but at the end of the 1 quart 1.8 oz bottle, I was feeling like Mr. McFeely.

This was  a nice solid brew that I enjoyed as I was singing “It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood…would you be mine?  Could you be mine?”.

Rating: B

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2XIPA by Southern Tier Brewing Company

I really can’t believe that summer is at its unofficial end.  It seems like only yesterday it was Memorial Day.  It truly is amazing how fast time flies the older you get.

Beer #280 is 2XIPA by Southern Tier Brewing Company from Lakewood, New York.  As the name suggests, this is an American Double IPA or Imperial IPA.  The ABV of this beer, which is brewed with four types of hops and three types of malts according to the label, is 8.2%.

The color was odd to me, I was expecting something along the lines of a orange amber but this poured a golden yellow.  A big fat fail was the head…I wanted the tiny white head here to be massive…it wasn’t.  The nose was quite yummy though, with grapefruit and pine (pine being the bigger of the aromas), a tad bit earthy and nice and malty sweetness.  I took a sip, the sweetness of the caramel malts kicked off first.  The hops then kicked  in about mid drink with a nice grapefruit like flavor.  The back end is more hops with pine being the most noticeable flavor.  It wasn’t all that bitter.  It wasn’t quite as thick as I would have liked body wise…it had a medium feel to it.  The carbonation was on the low side which made it quite smooth.  The alcohol was hidden nicely here.

The was a very nice DIPA that I would easily drink again…and again…and again.

Rating: B+

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Perpetual IPA by Troegs Brewing Company

Ninety nine bottles of beer left in the blog…ninety nine bottles of beer…take one down…well you know the rest.  After breaking in my new ride with a 20 mile ride today (only 6 were on twisty single track…the rest on the old canal tow path) I was quite thirsty.  I stopped by the local liquor store and picked up something from Troegs Brewing Company I have never seen or had before.  Beer #266 is Perpetual IPA by Troegs Brewing Company from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  This American Double IPA has an ABV of 7.5%.

Into my Troegs pint glass this went and the color was a clear deep golden yellow.  The head was white and was quite massive.  It left excellent lacing behind on the glass.  The nose was heavy with citrus (orange), a bit of pineapple & herbs.  It started off very bitter in the taste, which I love,  and then mellowed out into orange flavors and near the back end, sweet bready malts.  It finished very bitter again and a bit dry.  It had a medium body, was nicely carbonated, and was a bit creamy.

IPAs & DIPAs still continue to be my favorites styles of beer.  This was no exception.  I enjoyed this quite a bit as I did my new Salsa El Mariachi.  Troegs is one fine Pennsylvania craft brewer and I’m very glad I live in an area where I can enjoy their beers.

Rating: A

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120 Minute IPA by Dogfish Head

Today is another milestone on my journey to drink 365 beers…beer #265.  That means there are only 100 beers left to go…hooray for me!  It is all downhill from this point on.

Beer #265 was 120 Minute IPA by Dogfish Head.  I have wanted to try this beer for quite some time and I finally got around to trying it in none other than Delaware which is where this American Double IPA or Imperial IPA is brewed.  I found it on draft at BBC Tavern & Grill in Greenville, Delaware.  We had to kill some time waiting for my new bike to be built (at Garrison’s Cyclery)…so eating a delicious burger (cooked medium) and a beer seemed liked a great idea…and it was!

120 Minute IPA is very strong with a listed ABV of 15 to 20%.  The waiter thought it may have been around 17.5%.

It came out in a glass quite a bit smaller than a typical pint glass (the other smaller glass in the photo was a sample of Heavy Seas Loose Cannon IPA) with a clear amber color and a small off-white head.  The nose was very interesting…very herby on first whiff.  I thought I smelled basil and I had my wife smell it and she got the same herby basil like aroma.  I also got alcohol, honey, sweet caramel malts, grass, and an orange like scent.  There was a lot going on here in the nose.  I took a sip and the the alcohol hit me first.  It then got sweet, fruity (oranges and even some apples) and syrupy.  All throughout was that spicy herb presence that I could best equate to basil.  It finished off with a nice alcohol warming sensation.  It was very heavy, syrupy, sticky, and very smooth.  The carbonation was really quite low.  It was a sipping beer for sure and at times it felt more like I was drinking liquor.  I think we sat at the restaurant for an hour and twenty minutes before I finished the glass.  That wasn’t because I didn’t like it but I had to test ride a bike and drive home for two hours.  If I would have drank that any quicker, I would have been useless for the rest of the day and my wife would have been pissed.

Overall I enjoyed this immensely but one in a session is more than enough.  It had a nice range of flavors with the basil being quite unique and even with the high alcohol content, those flavors still shined through…to me it was quite delicious.  I am glad I had the opportunity to try this as I hear it is in a very limited release.  I even here there are places where this high ABV brew is not legal…interesting.  If you have the chance, I say try it but be warned…it is expensive and is not for everyone.

Oh yeah…for the bike geeks out there…I picked up a 2011 Salsa El Mariachi.  Cheers to Garrsion’s for being patient with me and being very helpful.  I highly recommended this bike shop and in the home of no tax shopping to boot…it was a win-win situation!  I can’t wait to get it on dirt and just ride…morning can’t come soon enough…

Rating: A+

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Double Jack by Firestone Walker Brewing Company

After what seemed like 40 days and 40 nights of heavy rain, today is a most gorgeous summer day.  Out on my deck I will enjoy beer #262, Double Jack by Firestone Walker Brewing Company.  Firestone Walker brews this American DIPA or Imperial IPA in Paso Robles, California.  The ABV comes in at a heavy 9.5%.  It should be an interesting lunch beer for sure.

Into my Starr Hill pint glass went this clear amber liquid with hints of orange.  The head was quite respectable with a nice size and a white fluffiness to it.  First sniff made me smile, heavy grapefruit juice aroma greeted my nose.  It had quite a nice floral and citrusy hop scent.  I thought the malts were very understated in the nose.  But those sweet caramel malts came back in the taste along with everything I love about DIPAs, grapefruit, pine, & citrus flavors and a nice even bitterness.  It had a medium body to it with medium carbonation, was fairly smooth and just a tad bit crisp.  The alcohol was hidden really nice here, no warming sensation or alcohol taste at all.  That being said, after drinking the 22 ounces I was feeling a bit…happy!

This was a very nice and very solid beer and it would have gotten to Kingly realms if it was a tad bit heavier body wise and a bit more stickier…at least that is the way I like my DIPAs.  Still, if you are a fan of this style, I think you will enjoy this also.

Rating: B+

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471 IPA by Breckenridge Brewery

It was an absolutely beautiful day here in NJ…shame I had to spend the better part of it inside…working.  Such is the life of a Working Man…nice old Rush tune reference there for the uninitiated.

I think I’m going to enjoy beer #255 while hanging outside in front of the grill cooking & smelling ground beef…burgers it is.  Is there anything finer than the smell of burgers grilling up?  The beer I will be enjoying is 471 IPA by Breckenridge Brewery from Breckenridge, Colorado.  This American Double IPA has an ABV of 9.2% and is part of their Small Batch series of beers.  Sounds good to me!

I loved the color here, a nice amber with lots of orange to it.  The head was decent, fluffy and white.  The nose was classic DIPA, at least the way I like it…lots of grapefruit with a nice malty aroma to it.  Those hops started off the taste with grapefruit, pine, and maybe a bit of orange.  About mid-mouthful the hop flavors mixed into a nice caramel malty flavor with a breadiness near the end.  Nice and bitter this was right on though to the aftertaste.  I love when an IPA gives me the sensation that I’m drinking white grapefruit juice and that is exactly what this is like, just not as ‘juicy’.  It had a medium body leaning towards being a bit heavy and syrupy.  Carbonation was on the low side and this was quite smooth.  The alcohol was hidden really well.

Fantastic DIPA from the Rocky Mountain (high…Colorado) State!  I enjoyed this thoroughly and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it.  This is my type of beer for sure!

Rating: A+

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90 Minute Imperial IPA by Dogfish Head

Today is a great day.  Why you ask?  Well to start it is International Beer Day.  A day started back in 2007 to celebrate…beer!  Today is also the start of the Yankees vs. the Red Sox at Fenway Park.  A three game battle to see who will be in first place (they are tied for first right now) in the American League East at the end of Sunday.  And last but not least…it is my birthday!  Is it a coincidence that International Beer Day is on my birthday?  I think not…

To celebrate all of these, I will be having beer #250…90 Minute Imperial IPA by Dogfish Head.  Brewed in Milton, Delaware, this American Double or Imperial IPA has an ABV of 9%.

The color of this beer is an amber with an orange tint.  It had a one finger width cream colored head.  The nose was heavy with grapefruit and pine and heavy with caramel malts.  For a higher alcohol content beer, I didn’t pick up any of that in the nose.  It smelled right up my alley.  The taste starts with some big sweet malts which then melts into the even bigger grapefruit and floral flavors of the hops.  Towards the end of the mouthful, you get what I could best describe as what pine needles probably taste like if you were chewing on them. It wasn’t nearly as bitter as I thought it might be.  The mouthfeel was thick and syrupy, bordering on heavy.  It was nicely carbonated but still had a tendency to be smooth.  I didn’t pick up any alcohol in the taste either.

This was another winner from Dogfish.  The only knock I had was that is was a tad bit too sweet.  Other than that…it was damn good!

One more thing…lets go Yankees!

Rating: A

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