Beer Review: Founders ReDANKulous Imperial Red IPA

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For the thirteenth installment of their Backstage Series Founders has brought us ReDANKulous, an imperial red ipa packed with Mosaic, Citra and Chinook hops. The backstage series has been a really great series thus far and brought some of Founders best and most unique releases. ReDANKulous comes in at 9.5% ABV and 90 IBUs.

Appearance: Deep red, amber or even a light brown color. Nice big 2 finger head and some really sticky lacing down the glass.

Nose: Pretty juicy and fruity. Tons of tropical fruit and pine resin are what I pick up primarily. You also get some nice flowery, earthy and spicy hop aromas as well. Fair amount of caramel sweetness in there as well.

Taste/Mouth: Toasty and caramel malt flavors come to the forefront initially and are followed by a lot of piney, resiny hop flavors. You get some spicy and tropical fruit flavors from the hops as well. Super balanced and super drinkable despite the high IBU and ABV of this beer. The ABV is very well hidden under the balanced flavor, beer is way too crushable for the ABV.

Price/Availability: One off as part of the Backstage Series which is a rotating big beer series. All the Backstage beers are priced around $10 and this one was no different.

Overall: I am a huge fan of this style and I wish more breweries would explore it. This beer took home gold for it’s category at the 2015 GABF and it was well deserved. Would love to see Founders bring this one back in some way in the future as I would love to have it again. Pretty near perfect Imperial Red Ale.

Grade: A

Beer Review: Duchesse De Bourgogne

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Duchesse De Bourgogne was my intro to sour beers and has since been a beer I often purchase at the store from time to time and enjoy quite a bit. Happy to be finally getting around to writing a review for it!

Appearance: Deep brown with active carbonation and a small sticky head. Really a nice looking beer, love the classic label too, truly a work of art.

Nose: Acetic, vinegar and sour notes right up front. Gets your glands salivating. Some nice apple, fruit, wine and oak aromas make for a real deep complex nose. The aroma makes you really want to start drinking this one.

Taste/Mouth: Cherry right up front with some hints of wine and fruit. Some lime flavors with bready malt notes to balance out the sourness. You get the oak notes from the nose up front as well. Of course the vinegar, acid and sour notes come through big here too but not overwhelming, very pleasant. Really complex beer all around and finishes clean.

Price/Availability: Around $12 and pretty good availability all around the US. Great pricing for the quality.

Overall: Amazing example of a flanders red, truly one of the classics. This is a great beer to introduce people to sours, its not overwhelming but displays incredible complex notes of a classic style. Could drink this one on a regular basis.

Grade: A

Beer Review: Lagunitas Imperial Red Ale

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Here is one of Lagunitas “Limited Releases” or seasonal beers as other breweries call them, their Imperial Red Ale. I will say right off the bat anything Lagunitas makes in a bomber I basically instantly buy. It is always prices between 3-5$ and is usually pretty damn amazing beer especially for that price. This wasn’t my first time having this beer when I reviewed it but I was glad to revisit. Imperial Red comes in at 7.8% ABV and 54.2 IBUs.

Appearance: Hazy dark red/copper, kind of akin to an older penny, with a 1-2 finger head and some damn good lacing. This is a damn nice looking beer. Always keeping it simple with the bottle art as well.

Nose: Resiny, pine with some more pine and a little bit of citrus fruits and pineapple over a nice malty background.

Taste/Mouth: Good amount of biscuit malt is noticeable right away and that pine and resin carrying over from the nose of course. Nice bite of bitterness and finishes malty and semi dry. Pretty easy drinker for 7.8% and a very good balance between IPA like hops and a nice malt base.

Price/Availability: Lagunitas killing it with the price as usually, $3.99 for a bomber of this stuff and great availability too of course, especially since they brew here in Chicago now!

Overall: Like Hop Stoopid or Sucks Lagunitas comes through with a really great beer sold in a bomber for a really affordable price. I am definitely a fan of Imperial Reds/Imperial Amber style beers as well and its no surprise Lagunitas, being the masters of hops they are, were able to make an extremely well crafted example of the Imperial Red style. Basically go out and get this while its still seasonally available, at that price and this quality there is nothing to lose!

Grade: B+