#298 Dogfish Head – 60 Minute IPA

Name: 60 Minute IPA
Brewery: Dogfish Head (Delaware, USA)
Style: IPA
ABV: 6%
Source: O’Carrolls Freehouse

Ahoy and apologies for the short posting hiatus – I spent the weekend in Rotorua submerged in hot water/cool Croucher beer, and neither were terribly conducive to writing.

I had this the other night at O’Carrolls, which seems to have more and more American beer (and less old men drinking Guinness?) every time I go in. It was tasty, although probably not the best choice for a first drink of the night. When will I learn that an IPA never is?

It poured a bright orangey-gold, and the aroma was of sharp citrus (grapefruit and lemon?), pine needles and sweet caramel. In the mouth there was a pretty dominant malt presence, which softened the resinous hops out with a honey sweetness. It was crisp and refreshing, but the finish was just a tad too bitter for my liking.

After the IPA and a Rennaissance Pilsner (which was yum, I should have written about that really) I switched to red wine for the rest of the night. Beerpiphany number #122: keep your hops and grapes apart – especially if you have to go ball dress shopping with your sister in the morning. Yeuch. 

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Published in: on June 18, 2012 at 1:05 pm  Comments (1)  
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#201 Dogfish Head – 90 minute Imperial PA

Name: 90 minute IPA
Brewery:  Dogfish Head (Delaware, USA)
Style: Imperial IPA
ABV: 9%
Source: The Beer Store 

Before I get on to the beer, I will just take a moment to address the snazzy BrewDog glass that’s been appearing on the blog of late.

This is my new favourite beer glass (also, ahem, my only beer glass*), and was sent to me along with a bunch of great beers by the kind folks at The Beer Store “as a reward for getting half way”.

Free stuff! Neato!

One of those beers was this 90 minute IPA from Dogfish Head, which Esquire magazine named “probably the best I.P.A in the world”.

I knew it would be excellent, and it was. Hugely hoppy and malty in equal amounts, with flavours of citrus, raisins, pine resin, and caramel. It was rich and sweet upfront with a dry bitter finish, making it moreish and crisp instead of cloying.

And as a testament it’s general deliciousness: a few of my friends describe themselves as ‘non-beer drinkers’, so naturally I have made it a mini-project of mine to convert them. The hardest nut to crack so far has been Chelsea Jade, but she finally actually liked this one. I’ll make a beer-geek of her yet!

*all but one of my large wine glasses have mysteriously disappeared. Flatmates, if you’re reading: this is my passive aggressive way of saying I’m watching you.

Published in: on February 28, 2012 at 3:40 pm  Comments (1)  
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#45 Epic/Dogfish Head – Portamarillo

Epic and Dogfish PortamarilloName: Portamarillo
Brewery: Epic (Auckland, New Zealand) & Dogfish Head (Delaware, USA)
Style: Tamarillo Smoked Porter
ABV: 7%

Look who finally got a Portamarillo! This is the beer that I wasted most of my lunch break last Friday trying to find before eventually settling for a Moa Methode. Thankfully the boys from Epic answered my distress call and kindly donated me this bottle.

I was really excited about trying this beer – and not just because it played hard to get. It’s the lovechild of two really exciting breweries – Epic and Dogfish Head in the U.S.A – and it’s got a cool Spanish-sounding name. It’s not Spanish though (I wish it was, I need to learn Spanish before I go to Mexico in December and all I can say so far is “My donkey is dead”*), but is an appreviation of tamarillo-porter. It’s basically a Kiwi Summer in a glass –  brewed using tamarillos that were smoked over pohutukawa chips.

Although I think of porters to be a Wintery thing, there are a few summery elements to the aroma. One is Christmas – dark chocolate and caramel, and the other is the subtle whiff of campfire smoke – bits of bleached driftwood crackling in the flames, maybe a hunk of meat sizzling on a grill…

The smoke gets stronger on the tongue –  not OTT but definitely there – and is of the peaty/campfire variety. There’s also roasted coffee beans, cocoa, a slight hint of sourness (the tamarillo?), and a bitter, dry finish. It’s actually this dry finish that made me think of the tamarillos the most. I  used to have them in my lunch a lot as a kid and I’d always bite into the skin which contained lots of tannin. The difference is that that was gross and this is good.

The mouthfeel was just right – neither thick nor watery, just velvety smooth and refreshing.

Overall I really liked this porter, and my sister who I shared it with did too. I’m a sucker for any kind of smoky beer, but I particularly like how this one delivered a lot of flavour without being too overbearing. Another cool thing is that I got through the whole post without using the word “hoppy” – which just goes to show that Epic are capable of showing restraint in this department. I hope they make some more experimental brews like this, and I hope there’s more of it around next time!

*  Il mio asino è guasto

Published in: on September 23, 2011 at 11:08 am  Comments (1)  
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