Thursday, August 29, 2013

Rogue Brutal IPA

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (958) - Albany, New York, USA - AUG 29, 2013
I poured a 22oz bottle into a mason jar. There was no freshness date. I got this at #BBC13.

Appearance: A bright orange hue, almost glowing. Nearly clear body with carbonation visible. Forms a large, eggshell, foamy head which mostly dissipates and leaves minor lacing.

Smell: A herbal/earthy aroma akin to cannabis.

Taste: Usually, balance is a good thing in a beer, but with a name like Rogue Brutal IPA, you go into it with some expectations of it being a hop bomb. Interestingly enough, this is one of the most well-balanced and malt-forward beers of the style I can recall.

The taste here reminds me of a Colorado IPA with the overt malt presence noticeable right away. It’s akin to that of an amber ale with sweet caramel and toffee flavors. There’s also distinct herbal and earthy characters, like tea leaves, pine needles and grass. The Crystal hops continue this trend and impart resiny bitterness at the peak of the swig and on the finish. I also detect some lemonpeel and lollipop-like sweetness in the aftertaste. Though far from a "brutal" beer, it’s certainly an interesting and noteworthy entry for the style.

Drinkability: Another reason Rogue Brutal IPA is misnamed is because it’s a remarkably drinker-friendly brew. The mouthfeel is calm, yet with an energetic/non-tepid presence and smooth texture. The hops definitely linger between swigs, leaving a slightly dank/cloying aftertaste. There’s a lot of body here for only 6% ABV, though I had absolutely no trouble drinking and entire bomber myself. 
Grade: 8/10