Monday, April 20, 2009

THE HEDONIST BEER JIVE GUIDE TO IPAs

Both celebrated and sometimes derided as the craft beer obsessive’s favorite drink, the India Pale Ale, and its kissin’ cousin the Double India Pale Ale, are the be-all and end-all when it comes to unadulterated and hedonistic celebration of hops. Though these things can get a little samey-tasting if you’re going for them all the time, when you find the crème de la crème, it’s as pleasing an experience as there is in life. No, not in beer-drinking – in life.

Here are a few that we’ve tried that have taken the Hedonist Beer Jive staff to the summit of happiness and back. If you’re shopping for IPAs or Double IPAs, and need a few to bring home this week, you’d do well to pick up a small bushel-full of these. Any questions, please let me know.

1. MOYLAN’SHopsickle (Double IPA)
2. SIX POINT CRAFT ALES - Bengali Tiger (IPA)
3. STONE BREWING IPA (IPA)
4. CAPTAIN LAWRENCE - Captain's Reserve Imperial IPA (Double IPA)
5. BEAR REPUBLIC - Racer 5 (IPA)
6. RUSSIAN RIVERBlind Pig (IPA)
7. IRON HORSEBeer Shoppe Anniversary Ale (Double IPA)
8. MOYLAN’SIPA (IPA)
9. LAGUNITASFreak Out! (IPA)
10. DRAKE’SDenogginizer (Double IPA)
11. PORT BREWINGHop Suey (Double IPA)
12. BOULDER BEERHazed & Infused (IPA)
13. DOGFISH HEAD90-Minute IPA (IPA)
14. SIERRA NEVADACelebration Ale 2007 and 2008 (IPA)
15. SOUTHERN TIER - Hoppe (Double IPA)
16. TWO BROTHERS BREWING - Hop Juice (Double IPA)
17. VICTORY BREWING - Hop Devil (IPA)
18. BELL’SHopSlam (IPA)
19. DRAKE’S - Hop Salad (Double IPA)
20. LAGUNITAS - Maximus (Double IPA)

9 comments:

mrb said...

Nice list. Could never get into Hopsickle, but I'm not sure I've ever had a super fresh one. Gratifying for an NYC dude that 2 out of your top 5 are local!

Aaron Goldfarb said...

Very nice list. Captain Lawrence's DIPA might be my overall favorite. Phenomenal.

Have you had Avery's Maharaja? Love that one too.

Now I'll definitely need to give Hopsickle a whirl. Don't see it around often, need to grab it next time I do.

Aaron Goldfarb said...

Also, you prefer Racer 5 over Hop Rod Rye? Have you had Racer X?

Anonymous said...

Jay - have you tried Sierra Nevada's new one 'Torpedo'? It's the bigger brother to it's green-labeled sibling weighing in at 7.2 and more hops-per-square-inch than anything from Chico. Nice list and thanks as always for your awesome blog.
Uli

Ken said...

Nice list, my new favorite is Troegs Nugget Nectar but I have just tried Racer 5, loved it.
Also had Oaked Arrogant Bastard, Ruination IPA, Celebration 2008, and Hopslam. All good IPAs.
Nice blog!

Anonymous said...

No Plinys? How about Green Flash West Coast, Ballast Point Sculpin, Moylander, Alpine Pure Hoppiness and Exponential Hoppiness, Firestone Union Jack, Caldera IPA, Port Wipeout, Hop-15, High Tide???

Jay said...

Hey anonymous -

I am one of those rare folks that thinks Pliney the Elder is good but highly overrated; I'd say the same thing about Alpine Pure Hoppiness as well. I like Union Jack and Port Wipeout very much. The others you mention I either have not had or just flat-out don't like (Hop-15).

Anonymous said...

Fair enough. It's been a long while since my last Hop-15, maybe it's time for a refresher. But Pliny overrated? Well, it's all a matter of taste, of course. I keep going back and forth over which I prefer, Pliny the Elder or Blind Pig, but Pliny the Younger is on another level IMO.

Dale said...

Jay,

Ya need me to send you some Founders Centennial? Seriously one of the best IPA's ever. Also, Short's finally started bottling it's beer. Their Huma-Lupa-Licious is some fine stuff and their regular pale, Pandemonium, is quite tasty too.