Thursday, September 10, 2015

Saranac Gen IV Session IPA

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1449) - Albany, New York, USA - SEP 10, 2015
Saranac Gen IV Session IPA is the third SIPA issued by the F.X. Matt Brewing Company since 2012. Previous incarnations were alright, though I think this edition might be the best of them. There’s plenty of hop character in the form of citrusy aroma and flavor, though it’s not particularly bitter. I guess it’s just hard to market a beer as a session pale ale.

I poured a 12oz can into my Saranac shaker glass. It was canned on 6/25/15 and cost $2.35 ($0.20 per ounce).

Appearance: Cloudy shade of maize/light orange. Some carbonation visible. Pours to a fairly large, white, soapy head; most dissipates but still leaves some lacing.

Smell: Clean, attractive and bright citrusy flavor; especially of orange. A bit of a floral and herbal character as well. Nice.

Taste: Looking at the ingredients I’m rather impressed there are four malts in this brew (including wheat). Not that this beer is especially complex or malty, but there is genuine body to it. Many so-called session IPAs tend to be basic and simple and direct. I can actually pick up a touch of wheat and light caramel sweetness here. The hops are predominately orange citrus thanks to Amarillo hops, especially up front. A mild bitterness through the middle on par with a pale ale. There’s a nice herbal tea sensation on the finish probably due to the Citra hops (a varietal I’ve always found to be herbal and grassy rather than citrusy despite the name). Overall, it’s a tasty and enjoyable palette for the style.

Drinkability: I’m actually kind of annoyed that summer is winding down and I’m just now seeing this in cans at my local beer store. At only 4.5% ABV, Saranac Gen IV Session IPA definitely lives up to its name. It’s light-bodied for sure with a crisp mouthfeel and fairly clean aftertaste. I also find it to be genuinely refreshing while in the mouth. The two previous Saranac SIPAS were much heavier at 4.7 and 4.9% respectively. The third time’s the charm, eh?

RATING: 8/10

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