In another edition of the Brewmaster’s Collaboration series from De Proef they teamed up with the New England Juicemasters from Trillium to create Bouket, a farmhouse ale dry hopped with Citra and Mosaic. I reviewed another beer from this series a while back, the collab with Hair of the Dog, Flanders Fred. Bouket comes in at 6.5% ABV.
Appearance: Active carbonation, soapy 1 finger head with nice retention. Has some decent lacing as you move through it.
Nose: Really nice nose on this one. Tart, a little sour and definitely funky. Floral and citrus notes with some white grape and earthy notes coming through as well. The Citra and Mosaic definitely add a nice amount of depth to this beer.
Taste/Mouth: Fruity, slightly funky and tart up front. Peppery, earthy, floral and tropical fruit. Really nice and balanced. Finishes crisp and dry. Bite from the carbonation but easy to drink with nice full flavor. This beer really opens up and obviously has a lot of different great flavors coming through.
Price/Availability: This was a one off collaboration brew. 330ml bottle for around $10-$12.
Overall: A great collaboration beer between two great breweries on top of their game. De Proef kills it with this series and has been able to pull some really impressive breweries to collaborate with and create some interesting beers. Bouket is a super drinkable farmhouse ale that can be appreciated by a wide variety of beer drinkers. It might be too late now but if not, try and get your hands on this one.
Finally getting around to reviewing Citra Hero on here. I have already done Mosaic, Galaxy, Local and Anti-Hero in the past so just rounding out my list of heroes here (just missing Crystal). This was not my first time having this beer but the last few times I had it I didn’t get around to making notes. Citra Hero is the summer seasonal hero and comes in at 7.5% ABV.
Appearance: Slightly hazy light copper color with a nice 1 finger head and great lacing. Love the new cans for the hero series, the art was always great but it really pops in the cans.
Nose: Big citra nose. Pine, resin, grapefruit, mandarin oranges, orange zest, pretty damn juicy. It has some sweet malty notes in the nose as well, smells nicely balanced but still pretty dank.
Taste/Mouth: Nice citrus, grapefruit and floral notes dominate up front. Good dose of bitterness and finishes slightly dry and bitter. It is a little hot but it isn’t unpleasant and sweeter on the backend. It has a really nice balance of flavors and showcases citra nicely.
Price/Availability: Rotating hero series, this is the summer hero. Now in 6 pack of cans for around $11.
Overall: Citra Hero is another super solid beer in a great series of beers showcasing hop varieties. This is a nice showcase of citra and is a really easy to drink beer. Switching this from bombers into 6 pack cans was a great move by the brewery and I think got the beer in a lot more peoples hands. I will continue to revisit this beer every year when it is released and am always pleased to see it on draft when eating out.
Half Acre makes some pretty stellar hoppy beers, especially their seasonal IPAs and Double IPAs. Beer Hates Astronauts is their all Citra and Vienna Malt IPA which is “The official beer of the comic God Hates Astronauts”. This is a very anticipated annual release from Half Acre. Beer Hates Astronauts comes in at 7% ABV.
Appearance: Hazy golden deep orange color. Really nice head and lacing, a great looking beer. Love the label as well, this year along with past years have some fantastic artwork.
Nose: Big nose, tropical fruit, pineapple, citrus, grapefruit and juicy berries. Also has some floral and sweet malt notes. One of those beers you smell the second you crack open. The pineapple and grapefruit notes are amazing.
Taste/Mouth: Juicy tropical fruit, orange, grapefruit juice and grapefruit rind. Some floral and earthy flavors as well. Great feel with a nice bite of bitterness, good light malt presence from the Vienna malt. Super easy drinking IPA. Midwest juice bomb.
Price/Availability: $9 for a bomber, limited annual release usually early summer. Pretty difficult to get and often sells out pretty quickly.
Overall: Awesome IPA from Half Acre and certainly one of my favorites from them. Half Acre continue to put out super quality beers and make a serious push to be my favorite Midwest brewery. All Citra and Vienna malt make for a simple yet incredibly delicious juicy beer. Seek this one out, it is certainly worth it and I look forward to its release every year. Beer Hates Astronauts is perfection.
Pipeworks is further extending their line of 4 pack 16 ounce cans by adding a new Session IPA in Lil Citra. I was excited for this release as I am obviously a huge fan of Citra as a hop and Pipeworks really hit a homerun with Lizard King. Lil Citra comes in at 4.9% ABV,
Appearance: Very slight haze, golden copper color with a small head and some decent lacing. As usual the can art is outstanding, Pipeworks has some incredible visuals on their beers.
Nose: Big dank citra aroma, mandarin orange and orange juice. Citrus zest with some biscuity malt aromas. Earthy and floral hops. Big nose for a session IPA.
Taste/Mouth: Juicy citrus fruits, oranges, mango and some earthy flavors as well. Some biscuit and cereal malt as well. Finishes clean with some lingering fruity flavors. Real easy drinking with some decent depth to keep you interested.
Price/Availability: New in cans around $9/4 pack and availability in Chicagoland seems to be good.
Overall: A nice addition to Pipeworks increasing line of canned offerings. Lil Citra is an easy drinking session IPA that excels in the aroma department while also offering some good depth of flavor. I still prefer Lizard King, although it is an APA and Lil Citra is a session IPA, they still seem comparable and Lizard King is still the top dog. This will be in my rotation though and is a great warm weather beer.
A couple posts back I did a review of Mikkeller’s Imperial single hop Citra IPA, as you know if you read my reviews regularly I really like Citra and Mosaic hops. So this time I have Mikkeller’s single hop Mosaic IPA. Mosaic comes in at 8.9% ABV.
Appearance: Hazy orange copper color with a pillowy 1 finger head and some great sticky lacing down the glass as you drink. Love the art on the bottle.
Nose: Fruity, juicy Mosaic nose. Tropical fruit and some earthy notes as well. Ripe mango and pineapple dominate out of the fruit.
Taste/Mouth: Really nice drinkable imperial IPA. Lots of fruit from the nose, pine and earthy hop flavors. Malt sweetness and some heat from the alcohol are present but do not hinder the experience. Good balanced and drinkable beer, only complaint would be its a little sweeter than I like.
Price/Availability: Rotating and around $4 for a single 12oz bottle, key as usual here is to get it fresh and not after its been sitting on a shelf for months or years.
Overall: Similar to Citra from Mikkeller its a pretty damn good Imperial IPA. Some more sweetness than I would like but the aroma and hop flavors are really nice and certainly compensate. Unfortunately like most Mikkeller beers its the price point and freshness that are a concern and kind of drag down its rating.
I believe this is the first Mikkeller beer I have reviewed on this site, I checked and it certainly is! I have reviewed a few Evil Twin beers though, as they are a little more affordable and readily available (and more likely to be fresh!). Did not want it to seem like I had more love for Jeppe than for Mikkel though, so here is a review of Mikkeller’s single hop Imperial IPA Citra. Citra comes in at 8.9% ABV.
Appearance: Love the bottle art for this series, I am a fan of the artist who does all his bottle art. Pours a very cloudy golden yellow. Super mucky looking beer, not that it bothers me. Nice super tight 2 finger head with some real sticky lacing.
Nose: Super dank hop aroma right off the bat. Lots of citrus, grapefruit, mango, orange peel and some resin notes as well. You can pick up some malt sweetness in there as well. Really a very pleasant aroma on this one, spent a few minutes enjoying it before taking my first sip.
Taste/Mouth: Super strong citrus flavor followed up with a big hit of heat from the alcohol but I guess it is to be expected. Nice malt backbone with some sweet bready notes and finishes clean. Carbonation is right on point and helps to keep all the flavors in check. Sticky finish with some lingering citrus and grapefruit flavors coming at the back-end of this beer. Lot of depth in the flavor, which get more pronounced as the beer warms up.
Price/Availability: Not great news on either front really. This is rotating and part of the single hop series Mikkeller does but to find it fresh is the key, that is if your willing to pay the $5 for a single 12oz bottle. Maybe this will improve now that Mikkeller has locked down a brewery in Cali and can control his price point in the states better.
Overall: Great single hop Double IPA and a fine showcase of one of my favorite hops, Citra. The aroma of this beer is definitely what shined brightest. It is a little boozy and definitely loses some points for price and availability. If you can find this beer fresh and for a reasonable price than it is definitely worth picking up. Dropping $5+ on it though, that’s a judgement call.
Up next is a review of another single hop showcase from Pipeworks Ninja Imperial IPA series, this time it is Citra. This is probably the Ninja I have heard the most about and the one I was the most excited to try for the obvious reason that is showcases the incredible Citra hop. Not much to add that I haven’t said on Ninja reviews in the past so I’ll just get to it. Citra comes in at 9.5% ABV and doesn’t list IBU.
Appearance: Deep hazy copper amber. 1/2 finger head with some great lacing. Love the artwork on all the ninjas, I assume it depicts various employees of the brewery?
Nose: Onion, tropical fruit, pineapple, juicy citrus fruit, resin and skunky. This one has lots of great hop character. You can get some of the malt in the nose as well just like some of the other Ninjas I have had in the past.
Taste/Mouth: Sticky medium mouth with a semi dry finish. Pine, resin, citrus fruits and pineapple dominate the taste of this beer. Nice hop bitterness and character with a little malt to balance things out, don’t really get any of the alcohol in the taste which is good.
Price/Availability: Rotating with availability of hops and schedule. I bought it for about $13 and this one sells out pretty quickly.
Overall: This is one of the better Pipeworks beers I have had without a doubt but I still think Mosaic reigns supreme in the battle of Ninjas. This is definitely a great beer I would buy again and one that lives up to the majority of its hype and a fine showcase of Citra.