Tasted following a morning and afternoon spent with Jaron and Louis at the farmers market and then reat River patio for their $1 "might be pints" special. We then headed back to their house to make some chili for this evenings festivities. I got to reviewing this after a run and quick yoga session. Thanks to Joshua Schipp for picking up a 4-pack of this last night. I first came across it at Brew Haha last year. It has changed a little bit, but is still a great IPA
Aroma: Very biscuity at the nose. Subtle pine and alternative earthy characters permeate the nostrils. Overall the scent is quite subtle. Orange peel and a bit of a vininess (smelled within the bottle because the pint was just too full!) Nutty with a bit of a woodsy element.
Taste: Foretaste is rather lemony with a orange pith bitterness. Malt bill resonates biscuit and caramel, yet more on the lighter side and slightly more grainy than smooth. I get brown sugar undertones as well as some spice. Fruity complexity, though not necessarily tropical, reveals somewhat of an apricot pear tartness. The midtaste further encourages this spicing, with coriander and ginger. Finally the finish is overwhelmingly viney along with a strong alcoholic flavor with a grassy profile. Pine leaves a very resined after taste as the sticky dry resins coat the mouth and are left for minutes after the initial taste. As ones palate gets used to the beer, and the beer warms, the alcohol fades into jest bitter fruitiness
Mouthfeel: Smooth mouthfeel with a little spike on the tongue. Nevertheless, I think the carbonation help heft up the body into a heavier standard. The beer finishes with a very strong resined dryness.
Overall Impression: Huge bitterness even for a double IPA, perhaps overwhelming for the new comer. In fact I thought last years was better, but I guess maybe Sprecher took to the bigger-beer-better theme but didn't really hit it right. Strong pine and orange complexities, but too bitter to really sit and enjoy. After taste of week long bolted lettuce is deterring.