Sunday, August 19, 2018

SweetWater NE Style IPA

Best before date: 7/11/18

Judged to 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines for: 21B Specialty IPA - New England IPA

AROMA: Fairly strong orange-like citrusy hops with some lemon character too. Base malt is generic with just the faintest hint of wheat and rye. No alcohol presence. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Extremely cloudy amber/pale orange hue (5-7 SRM). Large, ivory frothy foam retains and laces well. 3/3

FLAVOR: Hops create for a persistent orange pith taste throughout with a candy-like flavor (but not sweet, per se). Wheat and rye are subtle up front, though they become much more prominent on the backend with a bready/spicy sensation (rye is a bit out of place for the style). Bitterness is quite high for this niche style at 50 IBUs. The hops linger in the aftertaste with a drying sensation. Alcohol is noticeable, but clean. Slight oxidation due to age of the bottle. 14/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium body; moderate carbonation. Texture is soft and smooth; almost creamy - making for a comfortable, easy drinking experience. Seems spot-on for 7.5% ABV with just a touch of alcohol presence. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Probably as good as a Big Craft interpretation of a niche style is going to get. Adding rye was a nice twist. 7/10

TOTAL SCORE: 37/50

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