This week, and for the next two weeks in succession, I am going to be reviewing IPA beers which were components of the 5-pack care package bestowed upon me by Dr. Stefon as a token of his respect for my love and friendship. One day I intend on repaying him in kind for his generosity, but such an endeavor will be quite a challenge for even my talents; for Dr. Stefon lives an infinitely better life than me in practically every respect, and any gift I can offer would be akin to that moment when a toddler proudly hands you one of his chewed up toy cars. But I’ll come up with something.
“Tricerahops” is the first (and hopefully not the last) selection I have tasted from the tanks at Ninkasi Brewing out of Eugene, Oregon. It didn’t cause me to beerjaculate. It didn’t even cause me to release pre-beerjaculatory fluid. But it did give me a triumphant beer boner, especially due to its appearance. This beer glows like the Holy Grail, or Katy Perry’s bare melons lathered in baby oil (I’m not sure which I’d rather get my hands on, to be perfectly candid). Its appearance is magnificent, but unfortunately its appearance is its most notable quality. That isn’t to say it isn’t an excellent IPA. It is. It just doesn’t stand with the best of them.
Actually… I’d rather get my hands on Katy Perry’s jugs than on the Holy Grail now that I think about it for more than a nanosecond. Sorry, Jesus.
The liquid is a clear, bright, golden honey color with an attention grabbing, energized plume of CO2 bubbles rocketing up from the center with impressive velocity. When my hand got close to the glass, the light refraction from a lamp on my desk cast a golden red glow on my hand, which prompted me to pause and stare like a stoned cat. The aroma is a pleasing fresh pine and sweet melon. Its head is standard for an IPA: white, thick, and creamy. But it dissipates quickly leaving a pinky finger’s thickness of bubbly foam resting on top.
The flavor is simple; malt, toffee, pine needles and pine sap, with a lemon and sweet melon finish. Its bitterness lurks in wait and doesn’t affect the experience until the aftertaste. The bitter aftertaste is accompanied with malt, butter, and a touch of onion and garlic. The bitterness outlasts all the other profiles and becomes quite intense. That is when the 100 IBU rating becomes understandable. The texture is below average; watery, with medium carbonation and light creaminess that falls shy of how soft and thick I prefer my imperials. It’s smooth and provides no flavor of alcohol at all. The lacing consists of round, foamy spots dripping down the sides of the glass leaving small, clear trails like melting icicles.
Although this beer wasn’t anything particularly special, it was a quality brew, and the IPA is one of my favorite styles so drinking these will never get old for me. If you like a drinkable, imperial IPA that has a high ABV, but won’t knock you on your ass and has a strong bitter aftertaste then this is an excellent selection overall, but nothing that stands out from standard double IPA fare, with the exception of the appearance. But there is something to be said about that. This was very striking in appearance as previously noted. Like a vagina, beer is meant to be ogled before consumption. Sometimes when I pull off a pair of pretty, pesky panties I look at the unmasked spam purse, smile, and say to myself, “Well… would you look at that? That’s awesome.” I rarely want to dive right in without marveling at its beauty. Plus, I want to extend the experience as long as I can so as not to make it so obvious that at 38 years of age I still have a premature ejaculation problem like a 17 year old that shares a bedroom with his little brother and rarely has the opportunity to rub one out.