Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Truly Hardcore

As a self confessed IPA junkie I love to try extreme versions of IPA's, and so I thought that Brewdog's Hardcore IPA would be a great challenge to my taste buds. At 9.2% this beer is certainly hardcore in strength terms, but does the flavour live up to the name?

The beer is not the most pleasing on the eye, it pours a cloudy, dirty orange colour. The frothy head dissipates quickly to leave a thin lace of white head. The aroma is very intense, the first thing you get is a strong orange flavour like a good old fashioned marmalade, this is followed by a sweet funky aroma, you could even say slightly spicy, certainly lots going on for the nose to translate. Medium bodied, with a nice low level of carbonation, hop oils coat your tongue and throat.

The flavour is as complex as the aroma. Orange and grapefruit are up front, caramel sweetness in the middle, followed by a nice strong level of bitterness on the end (brewdog claim that this beer has 150 IBU's, but I have to say that I have tasted beers that have a stronger bitterness than this).

Overall I have to say that this is a fantastic beer, one that I would rate alongside Dogfish Head's 90 Minute IPA (I have yet to try their 120 Minute IPA). One to slowly sip over an hour or so, also let it warm up a bit and you will get the full effect of all the intense aromas and flavours. Go and buy some!

For homebrewers, here are the essential facts:

ABV: 9.2%
OG: 1083
IBU’s: 150
Malts: Maris Otter, Crystal malt, Caramalt
Hops: Centennial, Columbus, Simcoe
Dry Hops: Centennial, Columbus,

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