Got a whole lot of backed up reviews I got to get out. Up first from Oregon’s Deschutes is their experimental IPA Hop Henge. Hop Henge comes in at 9.2% ABV and 95 IBUs.
Nose: Pine, resin, onion, hop nuggets, citrus, grapefruit. Really get the smell of hop nuggets in your hand fresh out of a bag. Super fresh smelling, getting some earthy tones in there as well. Really pleasant nose with lots of elements.
Appearance: Hazy light copper color with a 1 finger head and some great sticky lacing as your drink it down.
Taste/Mouth: Grassy, earthy and piney are right up front. It has a dry mouthfeel throughout with a dry and bitter finish. Its very bitter throughout with some nice citrus, especially grapefruit flavors coming through. Taste and feel are a little disappointing after the really nice nose this beer has, still drinkable and enjoyable though.
Price/Availability: Seasonal release and at $6 for a bomber this is one I grab every time I see it on the shelf for sure.
Overall: Price is right and this is a solid drinkable beer. Nose is really great and the taste leaves a bit to be desired but it is drinkable for 9.2%. Again, this is a beer I will purchase every year at $6 and be very happy each time!
This is actually a review of last year’s Jubelale from Deschutes, just finally getting around to turning my notes into a proper review. They changed the packaging and label this year as it has just begun to show up on shelves. That’s how far behind I am on these reviews!
Appearance: Dark brown with a 1 finger head and some really great lacing.
Nose: Sweet caramel, brown sugar, caramelized sugars, toasted malt with some nice chocolate notes in there as well. Really nice malty, sweet nose. Smells like a delicious cookie.
Taste/Mouth: Follows the nose pretty closely with lots of caramel, sweet and roasty flavors. Brown sugar, caramelized sugars and a little bite from the carbonation make this a really easy beer to drink. Malt dominates the palate with really no hop presence at all.
Price/Availability: 6 pack for around 9-10$ in Chicago. Mostly available in the midwest and west coast, although Deschutes footprint may be bigger than it used to. It is a seasonal beer available in Fall/Winter.
Overall: One of the best winter seasonals out there, its not one of those gimicky bullshit spiced beers or loaded with orange peel or coriander. It is just a really great, malty, drinkable beer perfect for a cold night by the fireplace. I will always have a few of these in the winter months.
As usual I am playing serious catch-up with my notes and turning them into reviews on the site. I promise I am gonna get a bunch of reviews up this week though. I have notes going all the way back to late November/early December, I have just been so busy with work but I need to get better at posting more frequently. First up is Deschutes Fresh Hop IPA, Chasin’ Freshies, which I can promise you I had fresh! The 2014 release of this beer showcases Mosaic hops. Chasin’ Freshies comes in at 7.4% ABV and 65 IBUs.
Appearance: Light golden yellow with a slight haze and a 1 finger head. Some nice lacing down the glass as well.Love the bright hazy look of this one, definitely what I envision a fresh hop IPA to look like. Always like the bottle art from Deschutes as well.
Nose: Pine, resin, peach, passion fruit, citrus, pineapple and fruit juice. Really great showcase of my favorite hop as of late, Mosaic. The only other hop used is Bravo, which is a newer experimental variety hop. Very low malt profile in the nose.
Taste/Mouth: Good pine and resin from the nose carry over to the taste. Some earthy notes as well with medium carbonation and again very minimal malt profile. Hops come through more in the nose, very juicy mouth-feel and finishes a little dry. Definitely invites you to continuing drinking.
Price/Availability: Around $7 for a bomber and its a seasonal release. Great pricing from Deschutes as usual.
Overall: Had this one on draft at a local bar as well. A good fresh hop offering from the Bend brewery. Not the best fresh hop I have had but it is certainly well done and drinkable as well as at a great price point. I think this one is really carried by the Mosaic, that being said I would definitely purchase it again in the future.
I have thoroughly enjoyed Deschutes beers being readily available here in Chicago as I have visited friends and family in Portland a few times and enjoyed drinking their beer while there. Unfortunately I didn’t have much access to it while I was living in NJ. Expect more reviews from them in the future but for now I have for you a review of their very talked about about IPA, Fresh Squeezed. Holding down a 95 from BA and a 96 from the bros this is certainly a sought after IPA especially among east coast hopheads who cannot regularly get their hands on it. Fresh Squeezed comes in at 6.4% ABV and 60 IBUs.
Appearance: Hazy deep copper color almost toward an amber color. 1 finger head with some nice lacing. As far as IPAs go this color doesn’t thrill me, I definitely like my IPAs to be a lighter color than this. This looks more like a Double IPA or an amber.
Nose: This beer is hopped with Citra and Mosaic two of my favorite hops. Citrus, blood orange, passionfruit, grapefruit and even some peach. Definitely a good amount of sweet maltiness in the nose too.
Taste/Mouth: Taste follows the nose with plenty of citrus, grapefruit and oranges. Really juicy beer with a decent bite from the hops. Lots of malt balances this one out. One of the maltier IPAs I have had in quite a long time. It is definitely a beer you can have your friends who “Don’t drink IPAs” try and probably get them on the bandwagon. It is really drinkable, Mosaic definitely takes the driver seat and Citra is sitting shotgun.
Price/Availability: Year round offering from Deschutes and availability is pretty good in the Midwest and west coast. Price here in Chicago is right around $11 for a sixer.
Overall: In this hopheads opinion, this is a bit too malty of an IPA. Doesn’t mean it is bad, quite the opposite really I think it is extremely well done and is probably some IPA lovers absolute favorite. I personally like malt to be toned down and the hops and bitterness to be on the forefront of my IPAs. Balance is important but this might even be too balanced in my opinion. Nonetheless this is a very drinkable beer and certainly one people should try and determine for themselves whether it is up their alley.