IPA – English: Hawkeshead IPA

This weeks Beer is brewed in Cumbria, more notably the Lake District. Hawkshead are an independent brewery in the Lake District and today I’m writing about their great IPA. I first discovered this beer on a trip to Keswick, which is a fantastic place that I recommend. The beer market is actually pretty booming in Cumbria, with a lot of traditional and craft breweries making amazing beer.

Let’s start with Hawkshead‘s description of the brew:

A modern IPA, amber in colour, with huge, complex hop flavours from a blend of American and New Zealand hops, including Cascade, Columbus and Motueka, and balanced by sweet malt. India Pale Ale is a classic British beer style, traditionally brewed strong and well-hopped to survive the voyage to India. This IPA takes well-hopped to a new level by using some of the finest, most flavoursome New World hops now available.

This description gives a lot away about the Hops, which I really like as it appeals to the Beer Geek in me but if someone was picking this up as their first beer they wouldn’t know what to expect. What an interesting Hop concoction though! It made me really look forward to this beer when I read it. After this, the usual India Pale Ale story that we all know. The IPA’s that passed through the sea to India were much different though, but that’s a conversation for another time!

As the Hops have been revealed in the description, let’s start with the Malt! I think the Malts in this beer are Crisp Maris Otter, Caramel Malt, 2-Row Carapils and a touch of Biscuit Malt. A very English IPA base, but the Hop bill makes you think differently – Cascade, Columbus and Motueka, what a fruity mix!

This beer pours an Orange/Amber colour with a thin white head which sticks around for most of the time drinking, it leaves some nice dotty, sticky lacing on the glass which is very welcome. On the nose, wow! Those Hops really come out, lashings of Citrus, Tropical Fruit and Orange Peel, it’s like a New Zealand summer in a glass. The palate brings out a nice, sweet Malt backbone with a touch of biscuity, bready flavours that carry through the entire time. On top of this you get the choice of Hops working their magic, lots of Tropical Fruit and Citrus to start, a touch of Pine and then on the finish you get a delicious Summer Fruit flavour lingering in the back of your tongue. The beer is well-bodied and has medium carbonation. It finishes Medium-Sweet. I really recommend this beer as the weather gets better, although I had my first one in a Rainy, November Lake District I can tell that this is going to be one of those quintessential Summer garden brews – even at 7% which is quite undetectable whilst drinking.

You can buy Hawkshead IPA in the UK at:

Hawkshead Shop (Out of Stock, 6 Bottles Minimum)

Amazon (In Stock at time of writing!)

Hippo Beers (In Stock at time of writing!)

EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%

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