English Style IPA – American: Left Hand 400 Pound Monkey

This mid-week offering is an English IPA, brewed in America by Left Hand Brewing in Colorado. It goes by the name of 400 Pound Monkey. I think Left Hand wanted to try to bring it back to the basics with this IPA, as there’s a hell of a lot of American Style, super Hoppy offerings in their market.

Let’s start with Left Hand‘s description of the brew:

Why does the world need another IPA? Because this one ain’t like them others. We use hops of a different color, earthy and herbal, well-balanced by bready malt. The result? An English-style IPA that separates itself from the ubiquitous bunch. Cartloads of bitter monkeys flinging wasteful amounts of bananas into the jungle … we’re so done with that.
This description has so much bravado it’s unreal! Whilst I do love American Style IPA’s, sometimes it’s nice to have a English Style one! I think both styles of IPA are great in their different ways though, and wish that Left Hand did an easily obtainable Year Round American Style IPA to compare side by side. Next time I see Warrior IPA, I’ll have to compare the two!
I usually start with Hops when doing a big, American IPA  but seeing as this is an English Style one let’s start with the Malt! Pale 2-row, Crystal, Munich and Malted Wheat. The 2-Row makes up a lot of this base. As for the Hops, surprisingly we’ve got no traditional Fuggles in here but the hop bill is impressive! Magnum, Boadicea and Sovereign Hops are used.
When you pour this beer, it’s dark Orange with a Medium White head. The head fades very quickly leaving some dotty lacing on the side of the glass and a thin white ring around the glass. On the nose there’s a lot of Orangy Citrus, Bready notes and biscuity aromas. When you first taste this beer, on the palate you get some Caramel, Biscuit and then an almost Rye like flavour followed by a Resinous Pine Finish. Left Hand have done really well with this style, and it seems like an American take on the base ingredients for a modern English IPA. The Balance in English IPA’s is always important, and it’s been done very well in this beer, Rich Malt flavours, Slightly Citrus and Piney hops with pronounced Yeast notes. The beer is very smooth and drinkable, and I’d say the Carbonation is high for this style. It finishes Medium-Dry. All in all a great Year Round offering and something I would definitely grab when I see it!
Unfortunately 400 Pound Monkey seems to be out of stock everywhere at the moment, but keep checking the below:
EST. CALORIES: 204   ABV: 6.8%
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Collaboration IPA – English: Magic Rock, Beavertown and Siren Rule Of Thirds

Siren Rule Of Thirds

This week’s beer is one I had a little while ago, but deserves a shout. I had another recently and it’s still just as fresh! Rule Of Thirds is a Collaboration beer by Siren Craft Brew, Magic Rock and Beavertown. Three of the best UK Breweries. What makes this interesting is that they’ve taken a Third of their IPA recipes and brought them together to make this beer.

Let’s start with the description of the beer:

Take three flagship IPA’s from Siren, Magic Rock, Beavertown and combine them to create something entirely new yet distinctively familiar. That’s the goal with Rule of Thirds, each of the deliciously defining features to flow seamlessly from one to another.

A simple and effective description. However, I feel as though they expect you to have tasted all of the IPA’s used to create this… some people may not have! But nevertheless, a good description with a good story behind it!

Now, with the Recipe it’s a hard one… They’ve said a Third of their recipes. Does that mean a Third of each full recipe? Or just parts? I’ve listed all the ingredients for all three brews, and then highlighted in Bold which flavours stand out the most. Maris Otter Two-Row Malt, Munich Malt, Cara Malt, Caramel/Crystal Malt. Simcoe, Cascade, Apollo, Summit, Target, Warrior, Magnum, Amerillo, Bravo and Columbus Hops. If it literally uses all the ingredients, the hopping schedule on this one must be insane! I think the best thing to do if Homebrewing is experiment with both!

This beer pours Golden with a white ring around the edges of the glass. On the nose there’s massive hits of Mango, Citrus, Orange Peel and Bubblegum. This really is one of the best IPA’s I’ve smelt for a while! When tasting this beer, you get loads of Grapefruit, Mango, Citrus, Lemon Zest ending with a Bitter Resinous Pine Needle finish. It really is quite Bitter, but if you like your IPA’s you’ll definitely love it! The beer is Medium Bodied and finishes quite dry with good Carbonation.

Although this beer is finished, Siren are always one to re-release their beers and if you can find one, even better! As I mentioned, I had another a week ago and it’s still just as full flavoured as when I first had it back in December. Also, Craft Beer Co locations are known to have it on tap.

Keep checking the following links for stock: Beer Gonzo, Ales by Mail.

Rye IPA – American: Green Flash Road Warrior

Green Flash Road Warrior

There hasn’t been an extra Wednesday post for a few weeks, so I thought I’d start it right with this Imperial Rye IPA from Green Flash in San Diego. Green Flash’s Imperial IPA’s are some of my favourites, and Rye Beers are one of my favourite styles so I was looking forward to trying this one for quite some time.

Let’s start with Green Flash‘s description of the beer:

HOP ON AND ENJOY THE RYE OF YOUR LIFE

Our Imperial Rye IPA is brewed in the name of our Road Warriors—the sales team who tirelessly hit the streets, traveling from town to town and pub to pub sharing the Green Flash experience. Road Warrior™ charges full flavor forward. Columbus and Mosaic hops, rich crystal and spicy rye malts pave the way for Mosaic and Amarillo dry-hopping to boldly shine through in the finish. Raise a glass to those who never settle!

A catchy motto, one of the quirky things I’ve grown to love when it comes to Green Flash. Also a little story – nice they dedicate it to their hardworking sales people. I also like how Green Flash are always so open about their recipe (it makes my job a little easier too) and always seem to have a positive take on everything they make. Some brewers are doom and gloom and focus on taking down that big brewer, but Green Flash always focus on what they do best – making good beers.

The recipe for this one speaks for itself after looking at the description, so I’m going to be quick! On the Malt bill, we’ve got some Crystal, Rye, 2-Row Barley and a little bit of Pale Malt. On the Hop side, during the boil there’s Columbus and Mosaic. After this, during Fermentation it is dry-hopped with Mosaic and Amarillo. The yeast is most probably the Standard American Ale yeast.
When you pour this beer it’s a Ruby/Brown colour with a thick White head. The head retention is great for this style and leaves some great rings of sticky lacing around the glass. This really is an inviting looking brew! On the nose there’s a lot of Rye and Toffee with hints of Pine. I found myself drinking this one as soon as I smelt it and was met with a wave of Pine and Spicy Rye, followed by some Citrus, a lot of Bubblegum from the abundance of Mosaic hops with a nice complex Caramel finish. I’d say the carbonation on this one is Medium for the style, as some IPAs tend to be quite fizzy at the moment. It finishes Dry and Bitter. For fans of Big IPA’s, I really do recommend this one!
You can buy Green Flash Road Warrior in the UK at:
Beer Gonzo (In Stock at time of Writing)
Chester Beer and Wine (In Stock at time of Writing)
Beers of Europe (In Stock at time of Writing)
EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%

Double IPA – American: Stone 18th Anniversary IPA

Stone 18th Anniversary IPA

This week I’m writing about a beer I had a little while ago, and may be a little hard to come by now. It definitely deserves a mention though. This Friday’s beer is Stone 18th Anniversary IPA. A beer brewed for the 18th Anniversary of the company. And, of course it’s an IPA! It’s what Stone has become known for over the years.

Let’s start with Stone‘s description of the beer.

As we compose the text for this celebratory beer‐a golden‐brown India pale ale dry-hopped exclusively and abundantly with El Dorado hops‐we stand ready to leap from the precipice of all we know into a new era for our company, our beers and, most importantly, our fans. It’s one that will see us exploring new territory, both geographically and creatively, as we evolve from pacesetters for the American craft brewing movement to cross‐planetary champions of the worldwide cause of craft, hoisting our banner to proclaim artisanal beers’ vast superiority over stripped‐down, business-driven, industrialized, fizzy, yellow mediocrity. We thank you for shadowing us for the first 18 years of our journey, and welcome you to join us for next leg and all that follows.

I won’t spoil what’s on the back of the bottle, as these are still around. Just make sure if you get one now, drink it asap! Stone’s IPA’s are never meant to last long. Quite a modest description for Stone, which I like. However, there’s still the comment about the larger brewers. It’s a good description, it celebrates their journey so far and gives you a tiny insight into the beer with the fact they use El Dorado Hops.

Let’s start with the malts in this one, 2-Row Pale, Crystal with a small amount of English Brown Malt and Briess Dark Roasted Malt. This is how it gets it’s colour and also some of the complex flavours that I will talk about a little later. As for the Hops, as it says in the description:- El Dorado Hops are used in both the boil and Dry Hop during Fermentation. El Dorado Hops are relatively new to the table, and I think it was quite brave of Stone to only use them in such a high profile offering.

When you pour this beer, it pours a Ruby colour with Golden sides and a medium white head. It really does look nice in the glass. It leaves dotty lacing on the glass as the head dissipates to a Thin Foam on the top of the beer. On the nose there’s loads of Lemon, a little Liquorice, Pine and some slight Cocoa. The way this beer looks and smells makes you want to drink it straight away, I haven’t written about a beer that looks this good in the glass for a little while! On the palate, the first thing you get is Toffee and Liquorice, followed by a big Lemony Citrus kick, ending with some bitter Orange peel and Pine. The Lemon flavour carries through the entire time, tied in with some complex coffee and toffee undertone. This beer feels quite light in the mouth, is medium carbonated and ends quite dry. What a fantastic beer, one that I wish Stone would brew again! I’d recommend it if you can get hold of one now, but in a few months it may be worth passing up.

I purchased Stone’s 18th Anniversary beer at Bottledog in Kings Cross, unfortunately I can’t find anywhere online in the UK to grab one of these. Even if you can’t this time, I’d recommend looking around August time for their 19th Anniversary beer, they’re always good!

EST. CALORIES: 255   ABV: 8.5%

Barrel Aged IPA – English: Siren Whiskey Sour

This Friday, something completely different to the beer on Wednesday.

This beer starts life as the fantastic Mikkeller, Siren Craft Brew, Hill Farmstead Brewery Limoncello IPA and is then aged in Bourbon Barrels. More on that later! This beer’s a little stronger at 10.2% and is a great brew to warm you up during those cold evening, even though it’s not a dark one!

Let’s start with Siren’s Description:

The crazy invention that is Limoncello IPA, the collaboration between Siren, Hill Farmstead & Mikkeller, has been aging in bourbon barrels.  The infusion of the oak and bourbon has added huge layers of complexity and hits the spot as a Whiskey Sour.  Slice of orange and a cherry anyone?

I quite like the description of this one. Not as in depth as a lot of other Siren Brews, and also not as nautical themed. I think it’s quite qwerky, assumes you’ve tried the Limoncello IPA and tells you about what they’ve done to it and what you should expect. Quite a good description here, to the point and not too over the top, gimmiky or arrogant!

The recipe for this beer is much the same as the Limoncello IPA, Pale Ale malt and some Malted Wheat to help the sourness of the brew. A sour mash is then added to aid the sour tartnessCitra and Sorachi-Ace. A very well informed hop choice, as Sorachi-Ace is a hop that injects tonnes of Lemon aroma and flavour into the brew, whilst Citra is a crazy fruity hop that will help with the Citric Acid tones in the brew but also add some delicate Gooseberry and Lychee smoothness to the beer. After this, a bucket full of lemon zest and juice is added for good measure. It’s then aged in Buffalo Trace Barrels to impart the bourbon flavours.

When you pour this beer, it’s not as fizzy as the original. The barrel aging has mellowed the carbonation meaning there’s no head. It pours an amber colour with bubbles resting on the bottom of the glass. It really does does look like it could be a cocktail, and it’s a similar colour to a Whiskey Sour. On the nose of this beer, you get tonnes of bitter Lemon and bitter Orange, after this there’s lotes of Bourbon notes to remind you it’s been Barrel Aged. What an inviting smelling beer, and so close to an actual Whiskey Sour! The aroma brought me back to a classy Cocktail bar in Cambridge and I couldn’t wait to take a sip. When you taste this beer, it starts with sour Lemon and a little bit of Glacé Cherry in there too, so far so good as far as it being like the cocktail! After this you get a huge hit of Bourbon and then some Bitter Orange on the finish. The mouthfeel is very smooth (like a well mixed cocktail!), crisp, clean with a dry, bitter finish. This really is a fantastic beer despite some untoward reviews and definitely something to keep you warm in the winter!

You can buy Whiskey Sour at:

Chester Beer and Wine (IN STOCK at time of writing)

For any bars/shops wanting to stock this, contact Siren Craft Brew Directly.

EST. CALORIES: 306   ABV: 10.2%

Belgian IPA – American: Green Flash Le Freak

This week’s beer is Le Freak, brewed by Green Flash in San Diego. A Belgian IPA at 9.2%, it’s definitely one that can keep you warm during the winter!

Let’s start with Green Flash‘s Description of the Beer:

Le Freak™ is the first-ever hybrid ale of its kind: the convergence of a Belgian-Style Trippel with an American Imperial IPA. Spawned over barstool pontifications between Publican and Brewmaster, this zesty Amarillo dry-hopped, bottle-conditioned marvel entices with fruity Belgian yeast aromatics and a firm, dry finish. Experience a legendary beer phenomenon.

I like this description, Green Flash claim to be the originators of American Brewed Belgian IPA. It also doesn’t give too much away about the beer, apart from the fact Amarillo hops are used to Dry Hop during Fermentation. Belgian beers are notoriously hard to get right, and lets hope Green Flash have!

Apparently, Le Freak uses the recipe for Green Flash’s well known Imperial IPA. The malts in this beer are two row pale barley, Carastan, a British crystal malt to help the beer’s body, mouthfeel and colour and crystal malt. Quite an American mix of malts apart from the Crystal! Next, the hops. Now I know I always say the hops are what makes an IPA, but with this you have the yeast to think about too seeing as it’s a Belgian Style Imperial IPA. Hops are Summit and Nugget, and it is then Dry-Hopped with Amarillo during Fermentation. Sounds like a pretty standard IPA, right? Wrong. This is where Green Flash work their magic, using their house yeast and White Labs Belgian Yeast to ferment the beer together. The Belgian yeast is put in for the first 2 days of Fermentation, then the American House yeast is added 2 days later. It’s then Bottle Conditioned with Fresh Yeast. Triple Fermentation? Yes! And that’s why it’s over 9%! I think this is a great way to make an American/Belgian beer.

When you pour this beer, it’s Amber coloured with a thick white head. It eventually Dissipates to a thinner head, but it is ever present during drinking the beer. It looks like an IPA, so how does it smell? This is where the Belgian Yeast comes into play, with Pepper, Coriander (Cilantro), Banana Bread with some Floral and Citrus aromas in there too. It’s something you definitely want to dive into once you smell the slight Brett notes in the background too. The taste is a lot like the nose, Banana Bread, Coriander, Pepper, Dried Orange Peel, Melon with that West Coast Citrusy IPA finish. This beer really does taste absolutely like a cross between American and Belgian beers! Like a Trippel crossed with a West Coast IPA! The mouthfeel is quite thick, leaving bitterness under the tounge and a sweetness on top of the tounge. Truely a great brew, and something that’s on my list for when I visit San Diego next year!

I really do recommend this beer, whether you’re drinking it in the sun, or snuggled up by the fireplace on a cold Winter’s night.

You can buy Green Flash Le Freak in the UK at:

Beers of Europe

Ales By Mail

The Bottle Shop

Beer Gonzo (IN STOCK AT TIME OF WRITING)

Unfortunately, Green Flash beers are not widely distributed in the UK at the moment, but this is hopefully set to change soon as they have teamed up with a Belgian Brewery!

EST. CALORIES: 276   ABV: 9.2%

Double/Imperial IPA – American: Stone RuinTen

To expand the content of this blog, I’ve decided to write about some of the harder to get (in the UK) beers I’ve had the pleasure of getting my hands on separate from the Friday posts.

Today’s beer is the great RuinTen IPA from one of my favorite West Coast Breweries – Stone. This beer is released once a year in June to commemorate the creation Stone’s awesome Ruination IPA. Originally released in 2012, there was such a huge demand for this beer that Stone decided to make it a Seasonal offering. It was too good to just be one of those “one off” brews.

Let’s start with Stone Brewing Co‘s online description of the beer:

We first released this decidedly indelicate beer in 2012, as Stone Ruination Tenth Anniversary IPA, to celebrate the 10th anniversary of our belovedly bitter Stone Ruination IPA. Stone RuinTen IPA uses the same recklessly hoppy recipe as the 2012 release; only the name has changed, since we’re now unleashing this belligerently delicious hop monster upon the public on an annual basis. We packed a whopping five pounds of hops into each barrel, and cranked up the ABV to stand up to the hop onslaught. The results are glorious, and we know you’ll rejoice in tasting this audacious gem of hoppy splendor once again. You’re welcome.

The description of the beer on the bottle is a little different, although has less sarcasm than some of Stone‘s other offerings. However, it definitely tells us what to expect – a hell of a lot of Hoppy flavour and a little bit of alcohol warmth.

After a little bit of research and having a look at the website, this beer uses a malt backbone of 2-Row and C15. Now for Stone’s specialty – the Hops! Stone have used a Hop blend called CTZ which stands for Columbus/Tomahawk/Zeus, Centennial and Citra. The beer is also dry hopped with Citra for that extra Hoppiness. As soon as I found that out I really wanted to try this brew, as Citra is one of my favourite hops.

This beer pours Golden with a white creamy head. It dissipates quickly, which is expected for a beer that’s over 10%. It leaves a dotty lacing on the glass which is inviting and a thinner head that seems to stay throughout drinking. On the nose you’ve got some Pineapple and Tropical notes from the Citra and some Citrus and Nectarine. This beer really smells inviting, and so deceiving with an IPA over 10%! When you taste this beer, you get a wave of Pineapple, Tropical fruits, a hint of Bubblegum ending in a massive Grapefruit crescendo. The beer is medium to high carbonated and ends with a nice long, clean bitterness. On the finish I would say it’s medium sweet. I really like this beer, and honestly think it’s a contender for the much sought out Pliny the Elder I tried earlier this year.

Although I said this one is pretty hard to find, you can buy Stone RuinTen IPA at:

Brewdog Online Store

It’s currently in stock over there, so grab it whilst you can! Hopefully it’ll be back next year.

As always, a google search is good too!

For any bars, shops etc that are interested, unfortunately Stone beer is flown in by shops that stock it currently but Stone plan to open a brewery in Berlin next year which means wide distribution of Stone Beer soon!

EST. CALORIES: 324   ABV: 10.8%

Imperial Coffee IPA – English: Siren Americano

This week, I’ve got yet another interesting brew from Siren Craft Brew in Wokingham, England. This is another crazy concoction from Siren, an Imperial Coffee IPA. Siren really have been pushing the boundaries of Beer Styles since they started in 2012 and as well as offering their Core Range they are always releasing interesting brews that push all different styles of beer.

Like the Limoncello IPA collaboration brew I reviewed earlier in the year, this one sits at a healthy 9.1%. For a specialty brew, this is becoming a normal strength in my opinion, especially in Siren’s case.

Let’s start with Siren’s description of the beer:

What do you get when your Head Brewer leaves some dark malts in the tank before brewing an IPA? A chance to be creative!

A true ‘American Mild’ sitting at a measly 9.1%. Packed full of Citra, Columbus, Cascade, Chinook, Mosaic, Comet and enough coffee beans to keep a barista on their feet for days.

A grande mistake made (very) good.

A very descriptive blurb for this one, almost so descriptive I don’t need to write the next part about the ingredients! Although I’m not always a fan of some brewers blowing their own whistle, the addition at the end of the description just concretes the fact that Siren think that although a strange (and therefore interesting), this is going to be a fantastic brew.

After a little research (apart from the hops of course!) I think the malts used in this brew are Maris Otter, 2-Row, Acidulated Malt, Crystal 40 and a small amount of Roasted Barley. I don’t think it’s Black Malt due to the colour of the brew unless it’s a tiny amount, and then I don’t think it would contribute to the roasty flavours. More on that after the hops! As stated in the description, it’s hopped with Citra, Columbus, Cascade, Chinook, Mosaic and Comet. What an assortment of hops, which leads me to believe that Ethiopian coffees are used in this brew. The reason for this is a lot of these hops have a lemony/citrus profile, along with the light roasty flavours imparted by the Roasted Barley this would be a perfect match to allow the Ethiopian Coffee to shine in this brew. The Coffee from Ethiopia also has a light roasty/lemon/citrus flavour which would work perfectly with the Hops and Malts chosen.

When you pour this beer, it almost looks like Coffee to begin with. A brown colour with a ruby/orange tint, after the fluffy head starts to form you realise it really is a beer! The head is an off white, starts rather thick and foamy which retains rather well for a 9.1% beer and fades to a thinner head leaving sticky lacing on the sides of the glass. The smell of this brew is so complex, hints of Lemon, Citrus, Coffee, Roasty notes, Caramel and even some Cocoa. After smelling this beer I needed to dive straight in, the first inital hit is some resiny pine notes, then the Eithiopian Coffee, Speciality malts and hop profiles start to take over with bursts of Lemon, other Citrus, Roasty coffee notes and some Caramel. Truely a tasty beer! The alcohol is hidden surprisingly well, but not well enough for it to be considered something that can keep you warm in the winter! It finishes medium/dry with a sharp carbonation comparable to champagne. Carbonation is in no way overpowering and helps with the carbonation, and the fact this is a great sipper on a cold day!

Who knew such a strange combo could work? But like Siren have said since the brewery started –

Our desire is to constantly discover ways to excite curiosity and share our knowledge of our craft. In so doing we believe that beer can be enjoyed in the same way as wine drinkers enjoy the finest wines

Siren seem to have got very good at this over the years.

Unfortunately there’s no official page for Americano, but you can purchase it in the UK at the following places:

Eebria

Beer Merchants (In Stock at time of Writing)

Alesela (Limited stock at time of Writing)

Also, a Google search never goes a miss!

For any bars/shops wanting to stock this, contact Siren Craft Brew Directly

EST. CALORIES: 273   ABV: 9.1%

Fruit IPA – English: Pressure Drop Nanban Kanpai

Although the weather is getting worse, I’m going to crack on with a few more warm (or humid and cloudy) weather beers that I think are great. This week a Wheat Beer/IPA/Fruit Beer mash up from a local brewery, Pressure Drop (Hackney, London). This is a wheat IPA brewed with Oranges and some other citrus fruits. This one is a serious refresher, and seems to be a limited edition or rotating brew as it isn’t even mentioned on the brewery’s website.

Let’s start with Pressure Drop’s description:

Wheat IPA brewed with Yuzu, Orange and Grapefruit

An extremely short description of the beer from Pressure Drop, but they are always a company that leave the tasting notes to you and the rubbish about evil corporate brewers behind. I always get the impression that they don’t bother themselves with anything apart from brewing some good beers.

After doing a little bit of research and talking to their representatives at London Craft Beer Festival I discovered a little bit about the recipe. First, we have the malts which I believe to be, 50% Pale Malt and 50% Wheat Malt. As for the hops, I think they have used Citra and Riwaka hops to go with the Yuzu, Orange and Grapefruit. The hops and fruit really compliment each other and it’s a great choice for this recipe. Whoever came up with this recipe know what they’re talking about!

When you pour this beer it seems quite flat and doesn’t leave much of a head, but it’s an impressive cloudy bright orange. The next thing you notice is a crazy citrus and tropical fruit smell coming from the glass which is unlike any other smell I’ve had from a beer before. You also get some gooseberry, a strange tropical juice and blood orange. This is truly a unique brew before you even taste it! After tasting, initial notes of grapefruit and orange rind, some lychee finishing with lots of tangerine and grapefruit reminiscent Yuzu fruit. As I said this beer isn’t really that carbonated, but it has just enough to make the flavours sparkle. It finishes very sweet but with sour undertones. I can imagine drinking this beer on a beach out of a pineapple! This really is a beer for beer lovers, and one to introduce cocktail lovers to what beer can really be like!

Overall, this is a truely unique brew and I recommend you try it!

You can purchase Nanban Kanpai in the UK at:

Bottledog, Kings Cross

Eebria

Alesela

As I said, it is a limited/rotating release so I’d recommend checking back occasionally if it’s out of stock.

For any bars/shops that would like to stock Pressure Drop beer, I’d recommend contacting the brewery directly. But please be aware, they don’t have barcodes on the bottles!

EST. CALORIES: 195   ABV: 6.5%

Imperial IPA – Collaboration: Danish: Mikkeller, English: Siren Craft Brew, American: Hill Farmstead Brewery: Limoncello IPA

I’m going to finish August off with this awesome collaboration brew from 3 great breweries – Siren Craft BrewMikkeller and Hill Farmstead Brewery.  This is an Imperial IPA brewed to mimic Limoncello, honestly an extremely refreshing beer and something I’d never had before until a few weeks back. After tasting it, I knew I had to put it on the blog.

Although this is definitely a summer brew, it’s something you can drink on the colder days to help keep you warm too due to the 9.1% ABV!

Let’s start with Siren’s decription of the beer:

This is a truly different beer. The concept was to develop the flavour and mouthfeel of Limoncello and fuse with the carbonation and lemony hop hit of an IPA. Using pale and wheat malts, the base beer goes through a 24 hour sour process to add to the tartness of the beer. Tons of lemon zest and juice are added to the boil along with all the citrusy lemony hops available.

A very informative, short but sweet description of the beer by Siren. So we’re expecting a nice tart flavoured beer with underlying hop tones and sweetness. Sounds incredible even from the description and very interesting indeed!

After doing a little bit of research (didn’t have to go far!) I found out that this beer uses Pale Ale malt and some Malted Wheat. Wheat usually goes well with a tart tasing beer, and will also help the head creation and retention on a brew with this much ABV! This is then made into a sour mash to aid the tartness. The hops used in this are interesting, Citra and Sorachi-Ace. A very well informed hop choice, as Sorachi-Ace is a hop that injects tonnes of Lemon aroma and flavour into the brew, whilst Citra is a crazy fruity hop that will help with the Citric Acid tones in the brew but also add some delicate Gooseberry and Lychee smoothness to the beer. After this, a bucket full of lemon zest and juice is added for good measure and some Lacto or Lactic-Acid to help with the tart flavour of this brew. I think all in all, this is a great attempt at trying to mimic Limoncello in beer form!

When you pour this beer, you’ll notice the awesome hazy-amber colour of the beer and the big white head forming. It really does take a few pours to get this all into a glass, and rightly so (after all that wheat!) The head dissipates quite quickly after sitting for a while, there is some sedimant in the beer but I think this is due to the lemon zest as it does not seem to have the typical hazy yeast appearance. When you finally get to smell the beer after it settles down, you get a big hit of Lemon Juice and fresh citrus with some citrus hop aromas and some lacto coming through. It smells a bit like freshly squeezed lemonade! Now comes the taste, if you think this is going to be similar to shandy or a lager top you will be disappointed. I was plesantly surpirsed, this beer really is something different. You get a massive hit of clean lemon flavours which then desends into a sour bite. The lemon definitely has the front seat in this beer and the sourness comes after which is a pleasent surpirse. I noticed some lychee and a little bit of freshly cut grass on the tail end. This is a truely different flavour but works out to be extremely refreshing. Obviously you can’t have too many of these due to the percentage, but this beer works well in the sun and after a hot, sweaty days work (or gym session!). It finishes quite dry and sour but with a crispness from the lemon which is second to none. 

Overall, this is a great beer and truely different and surprising compared to other IPAs that have fruit added.

You can purchase Limoncello IPA in the UK at:

Eebria

The Grumpy Goat

And at Brewdog bars and Bottledog Kings Cross.

There may well be some other places too, check google!

For any bars/shops wanting to stock this, contact Siren Craft Brew Directly

EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9.1%