In the days of hop bombs, this old warhead was a standard in my arms department. Back then, hop oils were a sticky libation and upping the pine was a sign of strength and endurance. Ah the late 2000’s were a crazy time. Anyway, here’s a throwback to hoppier times.
Colorado, United States
American Double / Imperial IPA | 10.30% ABV
A: It has a pale amber look to it, or very dark yellow depending on the hue you see, similar to most imperials, but with a bit less carbonation, perhaps that was due to my pour. The lacing looks nice and has a pillowy lacing to the edge of the glass.
S: I smelled this aroma from over 3 feet away, the hop profile is overwhelming. when you get into the mix of it its a cascade of various elements, sweetness, but with a lemony followup, a bit herbal, but nothing exceptionally bittering that makes you think of juniper or the ilk
T: Wow, where to start, first the warmth of the alcohol is nestled between a cacauphony of cascading tastes, it is present but takes a back seat like a patient master, waiting for his minions to dispatch until the final cleaning swallow. Mixed metaphors aside, the first taste is a sweet candy apple hop finish that quickly sets in to a deep bitter hoppiness, foresty, verdant, and kudzu? viney? it feels like a fresh camping trip is the best way to describe this. There’s almost a zucchini zest, a strange unifying element of herbal tastes on the finish that makes it a bit intimidating, but very satisfying.
M: The mouthfeel is as expected, not too malty, with a crazy character for the alcohol and hops to duke it out in the thin canvas. The mouthfeel is nothing exceptional, but considering there is a complex battle for sweet and bitter being fought in the foreground, it hardly loses points in this area. I would like several, however, I dont feel that I would comfortably enjoy more than a bomber in a night without moving on to other pursuits, simply due to the overture of minor, major, and mixolydian notes playing in concert at the same time, it is fulfilling yet exhausting.
D: very drinkable. the finish is fast and ends abruptly, you ruminate on it a moment and you are left with a piney citrus taste wondering what happened to the various elements taking place moments before. I enjoy this beer, but it is certainly not a session beer and its abv 10.5% certainly precludes it (well depending on the demons you are escaping) from being so. Enjoyable, but not one to keep in the stable as a hackneyed coach.
Narrative: “Place my equipage on the center rug and take care not to scuff the well adorned mahogany sides” You work busily to comply with his requests but his bitter nature and biting commentary is almost too much. “A little something for your troubles.” he presses a crisp $100 bill into your hand, for what? Bringing some cumbersome trunk to the front foyer? This is treatment you can handle, and somehow welcome. He walks and surveys the split landing of the threadbare banister. “THIS WILL NOT DO.” running a finger lightly over the worn wood, he looks to you for approval, you somehow gain a sense of commoradery in his majesty, knowing the complexity in his thought and manner, here you just a vagrant chimney sweep moments ago, now bitterly at the receiving end of his jansenist nature. “What do you feel this is a vestibule for peregrine mendicants? obtain your composure and tend to the rest of my articles, as resolutely as I am sure you are capable.” That was his way, you saw him cooly surverying the premises in his ivory suit, casuistically wiping the sweat from his brow in a manner that showed poise and decisiveness. The drying extraction of his remarks place you in a humble yet hopeful state, not unlike a teeball coach whom you welcome the reprimand if only for a dose of the gratifying approval. “Also, you…you take care of yourself…” his eyes glint a flash of knowing understanding, as though he too had been one toiling with luggage and taking care not to scratch the italian marble, a harsh but culling master, your maharaja.