journal of a self proclaimed beer connoisseur

India Pale Ale (IPA)

Dogfish Head – 60 Minute IPA

Date: Monday, January 31, 2011
Brewery: Dogfish Head
Beer: 60 Minute IPA
Category: American IPA
ABV: 6.00%
Brewed in: United States

The flagship beer from Dogfish Head breweries, this beer has some expectations to live up to.

60 minute IPA means that Dogfish Head hops this beer continunally for 60 minutes. They have 90 minute and 120 minute offerings as well. So this is the baby of the bunch.

The beer poured a nice amber copper color with great clarity and a beautiful 1.5 finger bubbly white head. This was not an aggressive pour (learned that the hard way with a tulip glass). Very attractive glass of beer.

The aroma from this beer is intoxicating. I took a deep initial sniff and was very pleasantly surprised by the harmonious combination of crisp citrus hops, pine, and malts. The hops and grapefruit citrus are clearly dominant but not overpowering. The pine finished out the nose and balances out the fruity aspect nicely. This is like airfreshner for beer geeks.

I took my first sip and let it wash around in my mouth and linger before eventually swallowing in an attempt to glean as much information as possible out of my first impression. To summarize – spectacular. This is a delicious beer. You get a very good dose of bitter hops but the grapefruit citrus flavors play this bitterness off very positively. Pine again is present in the finish to balance off the experience. In the finish you can start to taste a bit of the malts.

The mouthfeel is smooth, if not a little thick, and carbonation is moderate. The finish is dry and refreshing.

This beer definitely lived up to expectations and I can agree with Dogfish Head’s assessment that this is THE session beer for hop heads (i.e. IPA lovers). So far, it would be my choice. If you haven’t and had the pleasure of trying this beer – get on it!

Now remember, ratings are subjective. This one may not be 5 pints to everyone – but it is to me. I could drink copious amounts of this.

Rating:


 

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Central City – Red Racer India Pale Ale

Date: Thursday, January 20, 2011
Brewery: Central City
Beer: Red Racer India Pale Ale
Category: American India Pale Ale
ABV:
6.50%
Brewed in: Canada (Surrey, BC)

This was the second beer I ordered at the Sugar Bowl while there for the cask night yesterday. I will admit upfront that I have had little exposure to IPAs in the past. I am starting to get familiar with the style now. So I have little to compare this to and can really only comment on my personal opinion.

The beer pours a transparent but rich amber with a creamy looking white head. The head receded fairly quickly two about one fingers and from there retention was incredibly long.

The aroma is dominated by citrusy grapefruit in which you can also detect both pine notes. The grassy American hops are evident in the aroma.

The taste is just loaded with hops and and an overpowering amount of grapefruit. I kid you not – every sip I took just confirmed that this beer tastes predominantly like hoppy grapefruit. The flavor is not overly complex but you can taste the malt character which has hints of caramel. The finish is bitter hops.

The mouthfeel is relatively smooth and the beer is well carbonated. It is an easy beer to drink if you are accustomed to and enjoy the bitter characteristics of an IPA.

Rating: