Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Hellhound on my Ale

Thursday, August 11, the Bavarian Lodge in Lisle, IL hosted their 2nd Annual Dogfish Head Invasion, offering 16 rarities on draft. Thanks to Joe Wietlispach for letting Tim know about this event and then thanks to the Sir for informing me since Lisle is only 20-30 minutes from my house. Enjoyed the company of my parents as well as my dad's coworkers Jay and Serena who met up with us after work. Even had this contraption called "Randell the Enamel Animal" which filtered both 90 Min IPA and Burton's Baton through fresh Cascade and Willamete hops picked earlier that day. Really awesome event, rated 3 off-centered brews (including this one) so stay tuned for the others.

Appearance: Poured into a 5 oz tasting snifter, had a very frothy and bone white head. Dissipated to only large bubbles around the ring of the glass. Slightly hazy and of a light honey amber hue (the lighting was quite dim). There was no visible carbonation and each sip left spotted lacing on the side of the glass.
Aroma: Deep, fruity aroma strongly resembling grapefruit. There is a really heavy citrus character (lemon and grapefruit) thanks to the large amount centennial hops used. Slight smell of alcohol apparent in the finish. Overall, extremely aromatic and extremely hoppy!
Taste: Begins with a slight malt backbone, quickly overpowered and drowned out by a wave of fresh hops, both grassy and citrus flavored. Leaves a great hoppy aftertaste without feeling astringent and completely drying out the palate. Goes down really smooth and the alcohol is not overly apparent in each sip, a nice feat for a 10% ABV brew!
Mouthfeel: Light to medium mouthfeel, overall it went down relatively smooth. Carbonation brought forth a lot of the hop citrus flavors and although the carbonation didn't seem overwhelming, I felt like I had a lot more afterburps (grapefruit taste!) than usual.. Had a clean, dry finish.
Overall Impression: Brewed in honor of Mississippi Delta bluesman Robert Johnson's 100th birthday, Dogfish Head packed in 100 IBUs at 10.0% ABV using none other than 100% centennial hops at a rate of 100 kilos per 100 barrel brew-length (wow, what a mouthful!) to accomplish this feat. Yes, it did have that classic hop bite, yet I found Hellhound overall to be very well balanced and quite enjoyed my taster.

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