Since this is the Thanksgiving holiday, I thought it entirely fitting to review a brew that gives something back. Last weekend I reviewed the Ovila Saison, sales of which benefited a California abbey. Pretty noble, but nowhere near as noble as the brew I’m trying today, Stone Brewing Company’s Japanese Green Tea IPA.
This brew is a triple collaboration between Stone, Japan’s Baird Brewing Company, and Guam’s Ishii Brewing Company, and it’s dedicated to all the Japanese who were affected by this year’s earthwuake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown. All sale proceeds go directly toward Japanese disaster relief efforts.
A very worthwhile cause to support, but it’s also an incredibly unique beer. The pour looked like cloudy apple cider, with tons of suspended sediment visible in the bottle and glass. The aroma had a floral hoppy backbone, with hints of green tea. Surprisingly, there was almost no foam crown at all.
Tastewise, the IPA aspects of this brew stand on their own against my other favorite IPAs. The hops were floral and a little perfumey but not overbearing, and it started out like a big hops punch, but the green tea completely mellowed the brew out through the middle. The hops came back in a long bitter end note, but the aftertaste was exactly the same as a cup of green tea.
This is a great brew and an even better cause, but its probably going to be tough to find since it’s such a specialized collaboration. Beyond the great flavors, it also boasts a surprisingly big 9.2% ABV. Bottom line, if you see it, buy it!