That’s P’s & Q’s, by the way. For this beer blog I am feeling a lot of hops and a lot of malt, so I’ve selected three beers that I really like with a heady dose of both. Kim and I are going to try them and I will write literary descriptions of all of them. I don’t care much about ABV’s and IBU’s. The two bombers are around 7.5% (perfect) and the Dogfish Head is 9% (a little strong, but smaller.) This is more about flavor, and why I keep going back to these brews when I travel to the store. I’m not a sommelier or a professional taster, but I do know what I like. All three of these beers are on the medium expensive side, but there is a reason why they taste so good.
I have noticed that a beer can taste delicious one day and the same beer can be uninteresting the next. I think it has to do with my biorhythms, what I’m eating, how I’m sleeping, the air I’m breathing, how I’m feeling, etcetera. I guarantee that all three of these will be delicious, because I’ve been at work all day, and it’s Memorial Day, (Just a Pima Indian) and because I’m going to make Kim drink them with me, even though she thinks hops are gross.
PPPFFFSHHTT . . . Ahhhh!
The Double Black IPA is the darkest, of course, with a thick caramel head. The Imperial Red is, well, more red. Thick headed and red. The 90 minute IPA is the lightest, golden brown, not as foamy. I poured them all out and Kim is wondering how we are going to drink all of these, but she’s a good sport. Cheers!
Double Black IPA–well, Kim said it’s kind of chocolately, which means she likes it. It’s not crazy hoppy, more like light hops. She says it’s creamy, too, and she’s exactly right. It has a chicory or coffee flavor, maybe just because it’s so dark, but there’s a really nice tangy flavor there. I’m surprised to see that this is the least strong of the three, but in spite of its color it doesn’t hang around long on my tongue, and I would almost call it a summertime beer. Kim says fall and warm winter day. Wearing a sweater, sitting outside on a deck. It says drink outside to me too.
Imperial Red–Much hoppier, and the malt is more, chewy, strong. Grabs hold. More layers to it. Makes Kim think of wood and live band. A nice bar, not concrete and grease. The alcohol flavor is much. much more. It’s thicker, stays on the tongue. Kim says Yeeucchh. Not her thing. I like it a lot, big hops with even bigger malt. There’s a lot of sugar in this beer. I think this beer is the one I will blame my headache on tomorrow. Kim doesn’t like it.
Dogfish Head 90 Minute. The strongest and most concentrated. The first time I tried this beer I didn’t like it. Three years later we went on a vacation in Florida where there weren’t a lot of good bottles. They had Dogfish at Publix, around the corner, and this beer was my special treat. A ton of alcohol. It’s very clean, but you can tell it’s strong. Lighter malt flavors, less sugar, tastes like a piece of buttered toast just broiled to where it starts to bubble and brown, not like the last one that is toasted and covered in marmalade. The hops is light but still there. Kim says it activates her glands. It seems to be of better quality. The alcohol is in it like oil. The back end is floral, island flowers, hibiscus and plumeria. Summer beer.
Going back to the black IPA it tastes burnt. The Imperial Red is a mouthful. Kim says I hate you. I like this style, but I think the crab is a good label for it. The 90 minute has the most finesse, by far. The Ferrari of the choices, where the black is a Camaro, fast and slippery, and the Red is an El Camino, capable of carrying a broken refrigerator to the dump and making me whistle on the way.