Beer Review: Foundation Epiphany Maine IPA

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I had this beer shortly before I took my trip up to Portland and was able to actually visit the brewery and get this fresh on draft. Drinking this Epiphany was the first Foundation beer I ever had, after hearing quite a bit about them and Epiphany in particular. Epiphany is a “Maine IPA” and comes in at 8% ABV.

Appearance: Very hazy light orange color with a 1/2 finger head which dissipates to a nice layer of foam. I love Foundation’s branding, its super clean.

Nose: Really big dank juicy nose, orange, pine, resin, tropical fruit, pineapple and mango. You get some caramel malt notes but its mostly just super stanky and dank.

Taste/Mouth: Awesome tropical fruit, citrus fruits, pineapple, pine and resin. Mango comes over from the nose as well. It has a super juicy and full mouthfeel. Great marriage of both the east coast IPA/DIPA with the NE style IPA. Sticky dry finish with some nice bitterness to keep this thing modest. It is super easy to drink at 8%.

Price/Availability: I got it in a trade but they are brewery release 4 packs I believe and are around $12.

Overall: This is one of the best beers I have had this year without a doubt. I got one can in a trade and after drinking it was so excited to get to Portland, Maine and try this on draft and at the brewery (which I did!). It is such a great hybrid double “Maine” IPA which blends kind of more traditional east coast DIPA notes with the NE style juice IPA that is the hot beer currently. Epiphany is bursting with juicy flavor and has such a big dank aroma I could smell for days. As mentioned this is one of my favorites of the year, and recent time, so no surprise it hits a perfect score!

Grade: A+

Beer Review: Carton 077-10014 (Motueka) East Coast Double IPA

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An east coast double IPA from my home state of New Jersey, this is Carton’s 077-10014 Double IPA featuring the Motueka hop. This series of beers are referred to as “dubviants” as they are all single dry hopped versions of Carton’s 077XX DIPA. This particular Dubviant displays the New Zealand hop Motueka. 077-10014 comes in at 7.8% ABV.

Appearance: Very hazy golden yellow 1/2 finger head with decent lacing. I’m a fan of Carton’s branding, their cans are very eye catching. Really nice looking beer.

Nose: Tropical fruit, lime, orange zest, grapefruit with some pine and resin notes as well. I was expecting a more dank nose honestly but it is pleasant.

Taste/Mouth: Nice tropical, pineapple and lime hop flavors. Pine and resin comes through from the nose as well. You need to dig kind of deep to really grab the Motueka elements of this beer I feel like mostly your just getting elements of the normal 077XX. There is some nice honey and caramel malt backing up the hop bitterness. Some floral notes as well and it finishes bitter and resiny. Semi thin to medium mouth, it feels light and crisp for being an 8%er.

Price/Availability: It is a rotating beer with hop availability I believe and is a brewery release if I am not mistaken. I got it in a trade.

Overall: It is a good beer, I honestly think I prefer the regular 077XX to this particular Dubviant though. The tropical and lime notes are very pleasant and it is an easy drinking beer for being 7.8%. 077-10014 also feels a lot more like a regular IPA to me than a double. This is the third Dubviant I have had and I preferred the others I had to this one. They are all good beers that I certainly would drink but don’t know if I would go out of my way to have this one again.

Grade: B

Beer Review: Pipeworks Grungeist Imperial IPA

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New ninja alert! Grungeist comes in at 9.5% ABV.

Appearance: Cloudy copper orange color with a 1 finger head. Sticky lacing and a head that dissipates to a thin layer. Typical ninja art.

Nose: Fruity and somewhat musty. White peach, stone fruit, white grapes, apricot, kiwi and some pineapple. Lemon and a malt backbone as well.

Taste/Mouth: Wow very unique flavors. White peach big time all the way through like a peach gummy flavored candy. Grapefruit, mango, apricot and grapes. Very juicy, flavorful and unique. You can pick up some heat but barely, it’s hidden well by the big juice and hop flavors. Keeps you interested.

Price/Availability: $10 a bomber in Chicago and pretty easy to find. Rotating as all the Ninjas are.

Overall: One of the most unique, if not the most unique Ninja to date. Grungeist is a new German hop and certainly has incredible depths of flavor. I am obviously a huge fan of this series (seeing as I have reviewed just about all of them) and I love they are pushing the boundaries of these single hop beers and using some new and different hops. This is an awesome and unique beer showcasing a hop I am sure we will start to see pop up more and more.

Grade: A-

Beer Review: Bissell Brothers Substance IPA

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Next is a review of Bissell Brothers flagship IPA, Substance. Bissell Brothers are certainly creating some noise out of Portland Maine with beers like this one, Reciprocal and Swish. Substance comes in at 6.6% ABV.

Appearance: New England hazy juice style. Yellow orange color with a 1 finger head which dissipates slowly into a layer of thick lacing. Very turbid.

Nose: Pine, orange, pineapple, tangerine, tropical and mango. Very dank and juicy nose. The pineapple and mango notes are what stuck out most to me.

Taste/Mouth: Nice juicy peach and orange with some floral notes up front. Lemon, tangerine, pineapple and mango make their way over from the nose as well. Biscuit and cracker malt. Nice chewy, medium body with medium carbonation. Finishes slightly dry and bitter. Its a very New England style IPA mixed with a typical East coast style IPA.

Price/Availability: This is a brewery release which is brewed weekly I believe. I got it in a trade.

Overall: A fantastic NE Style IPA which I would consider on the same level as some of Trillium’s beers. Unlike a lot of other juice bomb style IPAs this one still has a nice East Coast IPA feel to it. This was my first Bissell Brother’s beer and I recently took a trip to Portland Maine and was able to try some of their other stuff as well. Excited to see what this brewery will do in the future. This is a well crafted flagship beer for the brewery and certainly lives up to what I heard about it.

Grade: A

Beer Review: Other Half Baby Diamonds Session IPA

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It seems like my readers wanna see more hype. Ask and you shall receive, here is another beer from Other Half out of Brooklyn. This is Baby Diamonds, the session version of their Green Diamonds IPA brewed with Galaxy and Amarillo. Baby Diamonds comes in at 4.8% ABV.

Appearance: 1/2 finger head which dissipates quickly, some good lacing and super hazy light golden yellow/orange color.

Nose: Tropical, lemon, pineapple, grapefruit, piney, floral and earthy hop aromas. You can pick up some biscuit malt as well. Covers most of what you would expect from Galaxy and Amarillo, not a huge dank nose.

Taste/Mouth: Good hop presence in the flavor for a session IPA with lemon, grapefruit, earthy and some pine/resin notes. Pretty big dose of bitterness for a session IPA. which I didn’t mind. Finishes dry and bitter but also crisp and slightly chewy. Medium carbonation and easy to drink while staying rather complex for a session IPA.

Price/Availability: Rotating brewery release got in a trade.

Overall: This is a pretty great session IPA. Galaxy and Amarillo always make for a nice flavor profile. It is more complex and has more depth than most of the session beers out there today. That being said I like my “session beers” to be easy to get and something I can just grab at the grocery store or liquor store. Not sure it is worth waiting in lines at the brewery but if it came my way again I would certainly drink it and enjoy it.

Grade: B

Beer Review: Tree House Haze Imperial IPA

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Happy to finally get some more Tree House on the blog, this time in cans. A while back, when Tree House was literally still a shed in a backyard I did some reviews of Julius and That’s What She Said¬†(old school reviews). Well they have come a long way since and their beers are somehow even more difficult to get now. Haze is their Imperial IPA and comes in at 8.2% ABV.

Appearance: Super hazy orange juice. Nice 1 finger head with some sticky lacing. It is a New England style milky juice bomb IPA.

Nose: Pineapple, orange juice, mango, great tropical and citrus juice notes. New England style IPA so really heavy on the juicy notes with some floral and toasted malt coming through as well. You can literally smell this beer from across the room.

Taste/Mouth: All signs point to this tasting like a juice bomb and it sure does. Where is the alcohol in this? It says 8.2% but I wouldn’t even believe it if you told me this was .2% alcohol, it’s nonexistent. Great mango, pineapple and orange flavors. Grapefruit is big with a nice malt backbone. Has some biscuit and honey flavors as well. How is this an Imperial IPA, it drinks like a session beer. Medium body finishes dry.

Price/Availability: Brewery release, so much hype. Just hype, I got it in a trade and unless you like lines I think that’s the move.

Overall: What an incredibly well crafted beer. Tree House basically invented the NE Style IPA and every beer they make is unreal. They literally don’t have a hoppy beer on BA with less than a 90 score, and Haze isn’t even close to their highest rated beer (it has a 100 btw which is the highest score). Haze is one of their best beers and one of the staple NE Style doubles you should try. I could crush these all day and not even realize I was drinking beer. I seriously don’t understand where the 8.2% is, it is a testament to the incredible work these guys are doing. This thing is packed with flavor and has a nose to die for, get it now. Haze is perfect.

Grade: A+

Beer Review: Rushing Duck Consumer Friendly Keg Mover

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Rushing Duck, home of the hardest working brewery cat in the business James the Brewery Cat, is back with a hoppy lager in Consumer Friendly Keg Mover. CFKM is quite the mouthful to say, and type so we will go with the abbreviation moving forward. CFKM comes in at 5.3% ABV.

Appearance: Hazy straw yellow 1/2 finger head and some great lacing. Basic can with a decal on it, fits the beer.

Nose: Floral, earthy, citrus and lemon. It has some yeasty and even smells a little farmhousy or tart. Malt is present as well with toasty and cracker notes.

Taste/Mouth: Definitely malt forward with the cracker, bready malt at the forefront with floral and citrus hops throughout. Peppery and some yeasty notes, finishes dry and spicy hop flavors linger on your tongue. It actually has a very full feel to it and doesn’t feel thin like a lot of other session beers out there. It is more complex than advertised for sure.

Price/Availability: Cans are a brewery release and as you would imagine they do a lot of kegs of this one.

Overall: It is an interesting take on the hoppy session lager which is a new variant of the already popular session beer which lots of breweries are taking a swing at this style or something along the lines. I was expecting a little more hop forward but it was more of a solid sessionable lager with the malt flavors at the forefront and some nice complimentary hop notes. I didn’t love it but it was well done and I would certainly grab it on draft or drink it again when in the Hudson Valley.

Grade: B-