Thursday, April 5, 2012

Threadless India Pale Ale

I picked this up at the Binny's on Clark St. in Chicago yesterday. I asked the staff if they had had this before (it's new), but no one had. Fortunately, I went with my senses and chose it out of the plethora of options. Tasted it this afternoon after an 18 mile run around Lincoln Park.

Initial Observation: Really cool concept for a label! Finch's uses Ball cans, which if compared to the Rexam cans that Great River and Half Acre uses, they look slightly different. There wasn't much of a spritz upon opening, but I realized why - the can was filled absolutely to the brim.
Appearance: Deep orange/copper color. Head was puffy initially, but fell back into the beer, leaving behind a soap textured coat of bubbles across the surface. The beer is generally cloudy, but not really from visible particulates. Easily glowing and typical to what my perception of what an IPA looks like.
Aroma: Oranges and mangos erupt from the glass in a cloud of hop derived complexities. One could easily argue apricots, pineapple and some green floral essence. Coriander and a peppery profile are also pulled from the scent as well as a boastful dose of pine.
Taste: Sweet up front with a biscuity character to support what is to come. Honey and fruit gradually emerge. Midway the hop flavors become obtusely apparent with a rich, fresh pine flavor. Once the palate adjusts to the high alpha acid content, more layered flavors subtley become exposed. First a mango juiciness and then the orange peel and fruit. Apricot and peppery hops are retained in the end and help round out the beer in an extended, long lasting tropical pine fruit bitterness.
Mouthfeel: Thicker for an IPA if you're comparing it to something like Bear Republic's Racer 5. Nevertheless, still something to boast a sweetness and fuller body to add up against all those hops. The end is extremely hopped, leaving the mouth dried out and resinous, the perfect combination for a hop-head thirst quencher.
Overall Impression: Qualifies in a similar respect to Victory's Hop devil. The biscuit malt upfront supports a hefty hop load, but nevertheless compliments it well. The pine and Fruit flavors give additional complexity to an already fantastic flavor profile. I think it is one of the best IPA's to come out of Chicago so far.

1 comment:

  1. Was "the staff" a big red-headed Irish guy? If so, that's Jeff Collins, the beer manager there and also a former QCian. (North Scott 1988)