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?