Name – East India Pale Ale
Brewer – Brooklyn Brewery
Classification – Well, I guess it's an IPA.
Strength – 6.9% ABV (Yup... count 'em!)
Verdict - At A Glance
On the eye – A disturbingly seductive shade of bronze.
On the nose – Take that malty punch! Quite wrong-footing at first for an American IPA. (Being punched and wrong-footed can be fun!)
On the tongue – I really think you should just read on. Some things should never be summarized.
On the subject – Top US craft brewers 'Brooklyn' like to keep things fairly traditional. But it's what they do with these traditions that makes the difference.
On the market – No problems on its home turf, UK presence ought to be better. Some online options, Selfridge's sold me this one.
On the whole – 9/10
An American interpretation of an English beer with an Indian name.
That's what we're dealing with here.
But wait, that's not really true at all. Or at least, that's only how the story begins.
What we're really dealing with here... is a hero. An absolute champion among all beers. A beer which has taken an age old tradition, raised the bar sky high – and jumped right over it.
I've been left incapable of beating around bushes. To me, this is nothing less than an awesome drink experience. In fact, this beer is so ceaselessly enjoyable that – by the middway point – I'd honestly started laughing.
I mean... actually out loud.
If there is a more perfectly balanced IPA currently to be found on the surface of the Earth – I'll gladly eat my own kidneys with a portion of boiled rice.
And, believe me, I'm really no fan of boiled rice.
This beer is a journey through spice gardens, herb gardens, rose gardens, barley fields, candy stores (or 'sweet shops', if you prefer), its typically US style hop-fuelled bitterness is countered with great assurance by a very sophisticated malt base, and it has the most exquisite viscosity when served at optimum temperature.
Having said all of this – it is a bit on the strong side – perhaps a little over-dramatically so for an IPA, but I reckon I'll overlook such a mere technicality, just this once.
At the end of the day – I didn't stop smiling until every last drop was gone.
I suspect that this beer is going to remain a firm favourite of mine for many, many moons to come.