Monday, December 27, 2010

Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA

Brewer: Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Style: Imperial IPA
ABV: 9%
Country: USA, Delaware

Ah Dogfish Head, how I love thee! This had been in my fridge calling my name for so long, I could no longer resist. The 90 minutes in the name comes from the 90 minute long, hop boiling process. The longer hops are boiled, the more of the hop's alpha acids are isomerized. In layman's terms, more boil == more bitter. This beer is also dry-hopped which imparts less bitterness and more hop aroma.

Typically, this brew is meant to be enjoyed from a snifter or tulip, but seeing as I lack either (Christmas is coming), I turned to my pint glass. This poured a bright, golden amber color that was crystal clear. A big, white, foamy head lingered a long time before giving way to plenty of lace and lots of ringing going down the glass. Certainly a beautiful beer to behold.

The aroma is incredible. Plenty of hops are present and the smell runs the gamut from fruits to citrus. Plenty of peaches, nectarines, pineapple, and grapefruit are present. I'd be content with simply sniffing this all day long.

The big aroma leads to an even bigger taste. A sweet and smooth malt backbone carries a large load of hops with it. Plenty of the fruit I smelled makes an appearance in the initial tasting. Lots of citrus present. Mouth feel is great. The warm, medium body is creamy and smooth, not overpowered with excessive carbonation. The 9% ABV shows up as this began to go down. A warm spiciness imparted by the alcohol does a good job of balancing out the initial hop explosion. It then serves as a prelude to the smooth, bitter aftertaste that lingers, but not too long. The key to this beer is its amazing balance. The malts, hops, alcohol, and bitterness all complement each other perfectly with no single character overpowering the other. This is, simply put, my favorite beer. Amazing. A+

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