Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Hoptimum Triple IPA (2017)

Beer Review #177

Its been ages since my last beer review, and you'll probably have to wait a few months more for my next (as Pine Creek Challenge 100 Miler training is about to begin). But fear not, for my 177th beer review I've chosen the 2017 edition of Hoptimum Triple IPA (read 2016 review)

Where 'Tripel Ale' is a common category in Belgian ales, 'Triple IPA' is a less used term in the beer world. Typically the strongest India Pale Ales have been called 'Imperial' or 'doubles.' A few of the strongest IPA's (usually well above 10%ABV)  have labeled themselves 'Triple' and in previous years Hoptimum would have fit the bill. For 2017, however, Sierra Nevada has reduced the ABV to 9.6% and shipped this yearly limited edition beer in six packs rather than four. What could the reason for this be? A fluke of the brewing process? Lowering the cost of production? Or perhaps they're positioning themselves to offer this popular brew year round. You're guess is as good as mine.

Hoptimum pours a touch on the dark side for a so-called IPA, but its dark golden hue is right on target with the handful of 'Triple' IPA's have had. (Ruination Triple IPA comes to mind). Chilled in the coolers of the mini-mart where I made my purchase, this beer also has a slight haze, and just enough carbonation to keep a few bubbles rising through the glass after the initial burst of snappy white suds subside.

The aromas are primarily citrus and tropical - grapefruit, mango, along with a touch of honey. An herbal note keeps the whole thing from getting overly sweet.

Hoptimum's flavor is all about happened to it during the dry-hop process. Loads of pine and floral flavoring hit first. After a few sips look for a pleasant tropical note (papaya, mango) to reveal itself.

As expected this is a darn solid IPA. At 9.6%ABV and 100IBU's is the 'Triple' moniker really necessarily or is it simply a marketing ploy? You decide.

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