IPA Day

Hiya eaters!

Today is a big day. Today is a day I’ve been waiting for…for days! Do you know what today is?

It’s National IPA Day.

No, not International Phonetic Alphabet day. India Pale Ale beer.

Lately I’ve been developing an interest in beer beyond Busch and High Life (though the latter will always hold a special place in my heart). Since developing this interest, I’ve learned that I really don’t like this beer.

Or Rolling Rock. Or Dale’s Pale Ale.

But that I really love this beer.

Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat

And Natty Greene’s Guilford Golden Ale. And their Wildflower Witbier.

So when I heard about IPA Day I knew it was the perfect time to play around with some new to me brews. Unfortunately, I’m not in the ‘Boro. If I was in the ‘Boro I would be able to head on down to Total Wine and have my pick of their giant wall of “Make Your Own 6-Pack” selections. But I’m in the Dirty Dirty so I went to Kroger. They have a personalized 6-pack section, but it was filled with far too many Smirnoff Ices and fruit beers (and I have nothing against the latter, but it’s not my cup of tea tonight). So instead of getting to taste a half dozen IPAs I’m tasting two.

That might be best, though, because IPAs tend to be higher in alcohol and I’m a lightweight when it comes to beer.

So, without further ado, let’s get to the beer!

First up: Dogfish Head 60-Minute IPA

This is a beer made in Delaware, and since it made it all the way down here I can only assume that it’s sold in most other places. This beer is 6 % AVB (alcohol by volume), which I like.

But how does it taste, you ask?

Mmmm.

Bitter and hoppy, as an IPA should. Now don’t let that scare you off. This is a beer that hits strongly on the back of the tongue. The first thing you taste is the bitter, but it follows up with a strongly herbal aftertaste. As the beer warms the bitters mellow, but even still I would characterize this as a big ‘Baby’s IPA. This probably isn’t the IPA you want to start off with. But if you’re looking for an intro IPA, I think I have it for you with…

My second drink: SweetWater IPA

Sweet Water is a brewery based out of Atlanta, GA, but even still I think I’ve seen it regularly in the ‘Boro, so check your grocery store. This beer has 6.3 % AVB, which I like even better.

And the taste? Oh boy oh berto, the taste!

mmmm.

I characterize this as an intro IPA because it starts smooth and doesn’t hit with the bitters and hops right off the bat. Instead, this beer hits the middle of the tongue with an herbal flavor with hints of citrus. In the aftertaste is where you find the bitter and hops, though. This can be bad because if you don’t really like bitter beers than you’ll be more likely to drink it fast to keep tasting that herbal and citrus. But as this beer warms it mellows across the board. So if you’re really wary of more hoppy beers I would suggest drinking this closer to room temperature than right out of the fridge.

Oh yes, eaters, you can drink beer a little warm. Flavors change and develop as a beer changes temperature, so to really get the full experience of a beer I suggest sipping it slowly over a period of time. So that means you should save your good beers for sipping and only shotgun things that come canned in a case (or a “dirty thirty” if you’re lucky enough to live somewhere that sells them).

Alright, eaters, that’s all the waxing intelligent I can handle for one night. Hopefully you learned something and are running out the door now to dick up an IPA of your very own. If you do (or if you’re already celebrating) please let me know. Or tell me your favorite beer. I’m always looking for new ones to try.

G’night eaters!

PS-

Perrier for pacing.

To avoid getting horrible hangovers (or sloppy drunk), you know it’s a good idea to sip some water between drinks. But rather than ruining the mood with tap water, I suggest a bottle of mineral water. This keeps the mood going without raising your BAC. Which makes it a win-win.

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