IPA is Dead. Long live IPA! 4

Another year, another pack of single hop IPAs from BrewDog. I wasn’t sure if I was going to get them this year since our local liquor shop didn’t stock the pack this year. Ordering from BrewDog doesn’t happen often since the shipping costs are rather prohibitive. £ 25 for a box of beers is a bit too much, especially when a lot of the bottles are also around a tenner each.

All four bottles in an arty-farty short

All four bottles in an arty-farty short

Anyway, this time Billy helped out and we ordered a couple bottles into London, from which he sent them through to Amsterdam. It’s funny that that is still cheaper than ordering directly from the brewery. What’s also pretty annoying is that the prices in Scotland are also higher than they are in Holland, for some reason. Luckily for BrewDog, they have some stuff we can’t get anywhere else.

The hops this year were Kohatu, Amarillo, Exp 366 and Comet. Kohatu, as you might expect from such a Maori sounding name is from New-Zealand. Amarillo is one of the best known American hops. Exp 366 is a new, not yet properly named hop kind from the States too. Comet is a not often used American hop, but this version is a German interpretation.

Exp 366
As good a brew as any to start this year’s experiments (pun intended). It’s a rather timid hop kind, with a bit of a malty nose. Slightly crisp and sweet. The palate has some creamy vanilla but still crisp. No spices, not very deep but pretty okay. Nice, but no cigar.

Comet
Dryer and less sweet than the Exp 366. Quite a bit of barley but still crisp. That’s the nose. The palate then, that’s dry, malty and dusty. More beery, more grassy and some cylantro.

Amarillo
This is the most American on the nose. Not sure how to describe it better, but there is definetly a typical style to it. Very crisp and almost crunchy. Some spiciness too. The palate is malty , rich and almost potato crisp like. Apple and rosemary.

Kohatu
My favourite of the bunch. This hop gives a very crisp and fruity nose. Quite some passion fruit like scents, which makes me remember the Trashy Blonde in a good way. It has quite some acidity because of it, but in a very good way. The palate has a lot of fruit too, but not in a very citrusy way. Much more apples and passion fruit. Star fruit, the potato crisps too, and maybe even a bit mineraly.

A very nice set, and the only complaint I can think of is that it misses the more typical European style of hop, like Goldings or so. On the other hand, I prefer the American style most of the time because of the added bitterness. European hops are generally a bit more sweet and less bitter.

The Kohatu is a pretty kick-ass beer and has a lot of flavours to discover. The added fruitiness was a nice surprise, since that usually comes as citrus and that was different in this case.

I wouldn’t mind getting a six-pack or a full case of it, but I guess that’s not going to happen. Ah well, I’ll drink the Punk IPA just as well.

So, thanks again BrewDog for doing this. I love the series, and I hope you can keep it interesting for a few more years. Now, if you’d only do something about the ridiculous shipping costs to mainland Europe, you’d rock even more!

About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm a web developer at Emakina. I'm highly interested in booze, with a focus on whisk(e)y. I like to listen to loads of music and read quite some books. I'm married to Anneke, have a daughter Ot, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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