Thanks to Tony Singh for letting me know about this beer. I first made it last Sunday to GC (as well as two more times after, that week!) with the roommates for the football game. I was fortunate enough to get a great tour from Wayne while Thomas was a great addition to our experience as one of the wait staff. Unfortunately this beer won't be around much longer, and I was forced to write this review on a coaster, so excuse the repetitive nature and lack of description.
Appearance: Cloudy and turbid, like my idea of a true IPA. Amber in color with a strong resinous head. Dry lacing caresses the glass but it soon dissipates down the sides to form a dense foamy ring. Looks still within.
Aroma: Fruity and estery. The beer overall is extremely reminiscent of grapefruit as well as a dark plum-like sweetness at the nose. I also draw some pear qualities as well. Up front, the beer introduces with a biscuit malt bill in which all other flavors rely on.
Taste: Huge malt backbone of biscuit can be tasted immediately, but it reluctantly is masked under the generous heave of the hop alpha acids and resinous qualities which are represented in this case of rich citrus and sweet orange peel. The second half introduces a tropical zest and roasted dark fruit sweetness. Here the plums emerge as they did in the aroma, paralleled by raisins. The hops in the finish even incorporate a fantastic fruity sweetness that is not nearly overwhelmed by the malt bill, but enhanced.
Mouthfeel: Rich medium to heavy body in stature with a substantial, but adequately incorporated carbonation to pull through and expose more hop qualities in the end. Not in the slightest bit slick, and generally quite dry.
Overall Impression: This beer maintains a great balance while still remaining choked full of hops. The sweetness takes many directions, but my perception revolved more around the fruit-ester-esk-in-combination-with-hop-quality base. Raisins and plums, but grapefruit and zest. Pineapple in the finish. Excruciatingly drinkable. I made it back to Granite City 3 times this week just to get my share of this beer. Well done!