I poured a 12oz bottle into a goblet. It appears to have been bottled on 5/11/14 and cost $3 ($0.25 per ounce).
Appearance: Golden/light orange hue over a hazy body. Pours to a small,
white, soapy head which mostly dissipates, but does leave plenty of
lacing on the glass.
Smell: Dank resiny earthy character, plus some herbs and a touch of orange citrus.
Taste: There’s definitely a “je na sais quois” character to a lot of
IPAs coming out of the New England states. They’ve got a little of
everything: tropical fruit; spices; and pine. Though there’s still
sub-genres even within this niche style. Sebago Brewing Company’s 2014
Hop Swap is a good example of what I mean since it tends to lean more
toward the traditional “East Coast style” IPA with a rustic, earthy
approach, but still has that New England-style character.
The malt bill to this beer is quite interesting as it uses two English
specialty malts in addition to “flaked barley” (Two-row is the base
malt). It’s not particularly sweet, but there’s enough malty backbone to
give the palette a consistency instead of being simply carbonated hop
water. As for the hops, well, there’s plenty of those. Dank, resiny pine
flavor is prominent from start to finish as well as a strong - but not
overbearing – bitterness. A crisp hop bite at the crest of the swig
followed by slight herbal/earthy (green tea, tree bark) flavor on the
back end. Slightly dry in the aftertaste, but it fades quickly. Overall,
a very delicious taste that’s consistently fun and enjoyable to drink.
Drinkability: Sebago Hop Swap has the robustness of a hefty brew, but
the body itself does not. The mouthfeel is a little thin, but always
crisp and leaves no cloying aftertaste. It’s got a ton of flavor for
6.7% ABV, maybe even a little more than you’d expect.