Tag Archive: hoppy


MKE Brewing Company

Hop Happy IPA

ABV – 7.7%

IBU – 51

I picked up a bottle of Hop Happy IPA by MKE Brewing Company at Badger Spirits in Beloit WI as part of a “Pick Your Own Six Pack” one off. I was pleasantly surprised. I cracked open the bottle and took a tentative sniff. I was greeted by a floral, grassy hop aroma that seemed to carry just a hint of citrus.

I poured it slowly into my favorite tulip glass and and the aroma that had peeked out from the bottle was far more intense in the glass.

Hop Happy IPA looks like honey in your glass. It has a white foamy head that hangs around for a few minutes before vanishing completely.

I was a little bit bewildered when my first sip of Hop Happy IPA was sweet, but then the hops swept in and completely took over. The hops seem to have far more of a citrus to them at this point…ever so slightly grapefruit. Really quite delicious.

A nice bitter aftertaste lingers at the back of your throat…begging you to take another sip.

I tend to lean toward IPA’s and Stouts, so I may be a bit biased…on these two styles.

I thoroughly enjoyed Hop Happy IPA. Its definitely one I plan to tell my dad and all my friends about. It might be a bit on the boozy side at 7.7%…not something you could drink all night long, but it would be a great beer to take one or two pints of just to get the night started off right.

Have you had this before? What did you think? This is quite a tasty beer in my opinion. I’d definitely buy this one again…probably a six pack or two of it next though.

Great beer.

Hey…I just want to mention that I tried Dark Horse’s “Smells Like a Safety Meeting” IPA a couple days ago…the day before the 4th of July I think.

Anyway, I don’t have all the specs right now…and I’d like to pick up a couple bottles to give it a fair review…but I really enjoyed it the other day at Oasis Micro Pub…really good stuff.

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Kilbourn Hop Ale

Wisconsin Dells Brewing Company

Wisconsin Dells, WI

ABV- 5.5%

IBU – Unavailable

When visiting the Wisconsin Dells, you’ll find Wisconsin Brewing Company’s Kilbourn Hop Ale on draft at both the Moosejaw Restaurant & Brewery and Buffalo Phil’s.

 This particular day we were having lunch at Buffalo Phil’s. My Kilbourn Hop Ale arrived in a frosted mug. It is golden or possibly bronze in color. It has no real head to speak of, just a slight film floating at the top of the glass.

 Kilbourn has a piney hop aroma mingled with a slight sweetness.

 The first sip is all malt and the hop flavor is  vague and hard to define. The ale has a clean finish with no lingering aftertaste.

 Kilbourn Hop Ale is a decent beer , not great by any means, but certainly the high point of a pretty lackluster line up.      I wish I had more to say about this one.  It’s really just not a noteworthy beer.  Kilbourn Hop Ale is an American Pale Ale that is average at best,  made by a brewery that is lucky enough to be the only microbrewery in the Wisconsin Dells.

cheers,

Josh Frank

jfrank2264@gmail.com

 

IPA

Stone Brewing Company

North County San Diego, CA

http://www.stonebrew.com

ABV – 6.9%

IBU- 77

 I’ve personally enjoyed many of the beers I’ve tasted from Stone Brewing Company, but I never understood how they’ve garnered such a devoted following. I honestly went into this review with a much more critical eye…hoping for some flaw…but it was not to be.

Stone IPA is golden in color with a frothy white head.

It had a floral hop aroma that is intermingled with what smells a bit like toasted malt.

Stone’s IPA is crisp and satisfying. The grassy hop notes hit immediately while a subtle malty sweetness fades in behind it. The finish is bitter and leaves you longing for the next sip.

Stone’s IPA is a well-balanced ale. It’s quite tasty actually. I think now I finally understand the hype. I enjoyed the experience from first sip to last…and I think you will too. So…if you haven’t had the opportunity to try Stone IPA, what are you waiting for? Get off your butt and go get some!

Cheers.

Josh Frank

jfrank2264@gmail.com

HopMouth Double IPA

Arcadia Ales

Battle Creek, MI

http://www.arcadiaales.com

ABV – 8.1%

IBU – 76

Arcadia Ales Hopmouth Double IPA is certainly a pretty beer. It is an amber colored ale that seems to glow in my glass. A white head quickly forms, but is gone just as quickly.

 My nose is greeted by an intense citrus hop aroma mingled with a sweetness that reminds me a bit of honey.

 The first sip is amazing. Hopmouth is crisp with a nice effervescence. The first flavor to hit is the hop bitterness. A fantastic blend of citrus and what seems to be pine. There is also the slightest hint of malty sweetness, but the wonderful hoppiness is far and away the dominant flavor.

 I find Hopmouth to be crisp and really quite refreshing. For me, this seems like the perfect beer to end a day spent on yardwork.

 I plan to trackdown many more Hopmouth Double IPA’s.  I’ve got one bottle left and I’m planning to give that one to my dad. He’s just gotta try this one…and so do YOU.

Cheers.

Josh Frank

jfrank2264@gmail.com

Sasquatch Stout

Pangaea BeerCompany

Wisconsin Rapids, WI

www.pangaeabeers.com

ABV – 7%

IBU – 60

Pangaea’s Sasquatch Stout combines two of my favorite things…Bigfoot (yeah that’s right…Bigfoot, Nessie, little green men from outer space…I believe in them all) and beer. This is not just any beer either. Sasquatch Stout is black…black and opaque. If not for the creamy tan head and the steady stream of bubbles rising from it’s murky depths, you could very easily convince yourself that you were about to drink a glass of tar. Yes…it’s that dark.

Sasquatch Stout smells wonderful…all roasted malt with hints of chocolate. I bet the real Sasquatch wishes he smelled like this…might make it easier for him to pick up the girl Sasqatches if he smelled like roasted malt and chocolate instead of Sasquatch BO. Sorry that was an unexpected tangent, huh. Caught me by surprise too…won’t happen again.

With Sasquatch Stout, Pangaea created a brew that is thick, rich and creamy. The roasted malt tastes as awesome as it smells and the chocolate and coffee tones come through beautifully. The strangest thing is sort of a surprise hoppiness that comes in the backdoor and sticks around for a bit between sips. It actually seems a bit like an oatmeal stout, but I haven’t seen it defined anywhere, so who knows for sure. I guess its a mystery just like Sasquatch himself.

I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect from Sasquatch Stout. I’ve had a couple of Pangaea’s other brews and found them less than impressive. So I was a little apprehensive when it came to my first bottle of Sasqatch.

Sasquatch Stout is actually quite a complex beer. Personally, I think it would make an awesome session ale…but at 7% ABV, a few people might disagree with me on that one.

Without a doubt, you need to go pick up some Sasquatch Stout.

Cheers…

Josh Frank

Featured Brewers/Breweries?

Hey there. Over the next couple of months, I’ll be putting together a “featured brewers/breweries” segment.  Ideally, I’d like to meet up with some of the brew masters at the “featured breweries” for an interview as well as some insight into the beers they are producing.

If you can think of any brewers that you’d like to see featured or if you are a brewer and would like to participate, drop me a line at jfrank2264@gmail.com and we can set something up.

Cheers.

Josh Frank

jfrank2264@gmail.com

Victory Brewing Company

www.victorybeer.com

Downington, PA

 Hop Devil IPA

IBU – Unavailable

ABV – 6.7%

Hop Devil IPA is an amazing beer, and it’s has been a favorite of mine for quite a while. Victory makes some awesome beer…just give their Storm King Imperial Stout a try if you don’t believe me.

Hop Devil IPA is a rich golden ale. When I poured it into my tulip glass, a thick white head formed that lingered for several minutes.

The description at the Victory Brewing site says that Hop Devil is packed with whole American hop flowers, which I guess would technically make it an American Pale Ale…

The aroma was sweet with intense grassy hop tones.

Hop Devil IPA is intensely intensely hoppy with dry bitter finish. I would love to know the IBU on this ale, not that it really matters. Hop Devil is definitely a stand out among IPA’s and is easily among my top 10 IPA’s if not in my top 10 favorite beers, period.

This is one that you should definitely seek out. It is fantastic. It’s actually really awesome on draft as well if you can find it.

Cheers

Josh Frank

jfrank2264@gmail.com

Squatter’s Beers

Salt Lake City, Utah

www.squatters.com

Hop Rising Double IPA

9% ABV

75 IBU

Two words. Mother’s Milk, plain and simple. Or perhaps a hop-a-riffic nectar of the gods.

I poured this fine beverage into my Goose Island tulip glass…not really sure what to expect. I’d enjoyed Squatter’s IPA and had high hopes for Hop Rising, their Double IPA.

Hop Rising is a golden, honey-colored brew. When I initially poured it, a one inch off-white head formed, but it quickly dissipated leaving a thin white film.

Hop Rising has a wonderful piney hop aroma coupled with the slightest maltiness (is maltiness actually a word?).

This lovely ale is sweet at first with the slightest alcohol flavors. At 9%, some alcohol flavors are to be expected…so not a big deal. The initial sweetness is quickly overtaken by an intense though quite pleasant hoppiness.

Hop Rising is crisp and clean, but with a fantastic complexity that challenges your senses. I personally found it thirst quenching as well as the perfect remedy to the stress of a long day.

Squatter’s Beers’ Hop Rising Double IPA is a beer that I will definitely seek out as often as I can. At 9%ABV, its far from a session ale. It is more a beer that you might start an evening with so that you can really enjoy the flavors and aromas.

I find myself quite impressed with Squatter’s Beers and along with their brew am eager to track down some merchandise for purchase as I would be proud to wear a Squatter’s Beer’s t-shirt.

I’m looking forward to sharing some Hop Rising with my dad as well as turning my friends on to this fine beverage.

Drop me an e-mail at jfrank2264@gmail.com if you’d happen to know where I can get my hands on a Squatter’s Beers t-shirt. As of the writing of this review, their site appears to be having some issues, but hopefully it will be back up soon.

I suggest you stop what you’re doing and run out right now to grab yourself some Hop Rising Double IPA. No worries. BeernShtuff will be here when you get back with more beer reviews and other cool beer stuff.

Cheers.

Josh Frank

Squatter’s Beers

Salt Lake City, Utah

India Pale Ale
 55 IBU

6.5% ABV

 

I poured the Squatter’s IPA into my Goose Island tulip glass Honestly, I’ve yet to find a better glass when it comes to sipping an IPA than my trusty Goose Island tulip.

 Squatter’s IPA is certainly a pretty ale. It’s on the darker side of golden, edging slightly toward amber. It’s white head dissipates quickly leaving little more than a thin film floating atop the beer.

 The aroma is citrusy hop goodness all the way. I had to force myself to stop smelling it long enough to actually take a sip.  At one point, I may have gotten my nose a little too close as I came away with beer dripping from the end.

The first sip had a metallic, slightly sour flavor. I was concerned as I’d had such high hopes. However, the metallic flavor was quickly replaced by a nice hoppy citrus. The beer is crisp, clean and nicely effervescent. It finishes dry and the hop bitterness lingers on your tongue.

I am pleased to say that after the first sip, the metallic/sour flavors never returned.

 Squatter’s IPA is a great beer. I’m hoping to pick up some more to share with my dad as well as some of my other hophead friends. I’m curious to see if the metallic flavors turn up in other bottles of it was just a fluke.  It actually seemed hoppier than a mere 55 IBU’s, but I’m not complaining.  To steal from a coffee ad, it was “Good to the last drop”

I think it is safe to say there is more Squatter’s IPA in my future.

Cheers,

Josh Frank