Six String Dark Red IPA

Total Score: 7.05/10 Earth1 Caramel1 Grapefruit1 Nonicpint1

Today’s bruview is from a new Aussie brewer (for me at least) whom are based on the NSW central coast, a place called Erina (between Sydney and Newcastle), which makes them sort-a local to me (being in Canberra). Anyhow, me being me I went directly for the most challenging brew they make: A Dark Red IPA – based on a West Coast Red Ale, this one promises hops and I hope to soon nod my head in agreement of said hop promise.

Poured from a 375ml can into a nonic pint.

A: Body is more a cloudy dark brown than dark red, I’ll forgive it though as I just got a whiff of a nice big floral hop bouquet, yum! It presents with a boisterous beige 1 inch head that soon subsides to a foamy centimetre head. 6/10 – that’s for the false advertising.

S: Lashings of floral hops with some tropical notes as well (papaya mostly), some citrus characters along with a sweet caramel base. Quite a nice hoppy aroma, that is lacking juuust a little bit more punch for a perfect score. 8/10.

T: Definitely a Red Ale (with West Coast hops!) – classic Red Ale notes of earthy/nutty/roasted malt with a hop hit towards the finish, less papaya and more citric/grapefruit. The aroma promised bolder flavour than received… a bit disappointing considering the 6% ABV. Finish is also a little too bitter for the subdued hop characters you get. I suspect however this IPA would warm up well. 7/10.

M: Mid to light bodied with a nice dense carbonation. 8/10.

D: This brew is lacking a bit of finesse, especially with that overtly bitter aftertaste, hence the overall score. If this is Six String’s signature beer I probably won’t end up getting around to their other brews (too little time, too many beers I’m afraid). Aside from my quibbles I think the style and idea is cool (I’m currently brewing a Stout with Mosaic hops – a new hop variety used in IPAs) so I can appreciate the blurring of style lines, I just expected a bit more from this Red IPA. 6/10.

Food match: I would approach this with the same food that you would normally pair with an IPA – Thai, Malaysian and Vietnamese are all winners here.

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