In this fourth installment of Silvio Saturday, Silvio reviews three different IPAs. Seeing as I am not a huge fan of the IPA, Silvio’s love of IPAs should bring an excellent change of pace to LostintheBeerAisle. His review of the Aprihop is a great reminder to go out and buy some of this stuff. When I reviewed it, I recall really liking it (despite the lackluster effort of my review). So without further delay…take it away Silvio!
For this week’s review, I’ve decided to try something new – reviewing multiple versions of the same beer at once. Inspired by Josh’s famed trips to the beer store, I ventured out determined to fill my queue with as many options as I could carry. My taste buds led me to a tried and true favorite, the IPA.
In my experience, IPAs are like pizza and sex: even when bad, it’s still pretty good. Fortunately, all three turned out to be really, really good. Which, if you think about it, is still kind of like pizza and sex.
First up was Sierra Nevada’s Torpedo Extra IPA. I’m a big fan of Sierra Nevada, but I’ve never seen this brew before, so the bottle pretty much leapt off the shelf. My pour turned into a ridiculously tall head, almost three fingers of foam that took forever to dissipate, with a pungent hops smell. A rich, clear amber-colored brew awaited me, and I dove right in. This beer has a very hoppy, thick taste, and a bit of a mineral undertone. On subsequent draughts, I got a slightly bitter pine and herbal flavor aftertaste, but didn’t get the citrus taste the label promised. This was a very good beer – not incredible, but I loved the aftertaste, and its 7.2% ABV was the strongest of the bunch.
Next up is the Dogfish Head Aprihop IPA. I enjoy Dogfish’s 60-, 90-, and 120-minute IPAs, so the thought of an apricot-flavored IPA caught my eye and destined this brew for my gullet. The pour resulted in a nice foam head, which dissipated much quicker than the Torpedo, but had a distinct apricot scent and hue. The beer’s color is coppery and dark, and it tasted outstanding – light, tangy, and fruity, with a distinct apricot pull through. The aftertaste is bittersweet, but does not linger for long. The ABV checks in at a reasonable 7.0%. One item of note, this is a seasonal brew available from March through May, so I was a little surprised to find it in late February.
Two down, one to go: Green Flash Brewery’s West Coast IPA, highly recommended by my wife. This was the best pour of the three, with a very thick foam head that refused to dissipate – I literally scooped a spoonful off the top of the glass before I could partake. Its aroma was fruity but faint, with an amber, extremely cloudy color. My first taste was quite bitter, with a strong piney aftertaste. While the fruity aroma didn’t pull through into the taste, it was extremely hoppy – one of the most distinct IPAs I’ve ever tasted – and had a manageable 7.0% ABV.
So, three IPAs down, with three very different results. The Torpedo was overall the easiest to drink, but indistinct in any one regard. The Aprihop was very fruity, quite tasty but not hoppy, while the West Coast was nothing but big bold hops. I enjoyed all three, and would highly recommend them all.