Total Score: 8.7/10
Speaking of Modus’s worst beer yet in my last review (their Session IPA) here’s the new permanent stable-mate for their Former Tenant Red IPA and Pale Ale, and looky: it’s an IPA! Ooo! The can label bandies about flavours and large adjectives, but I’m a little pessimistic when an IPA has an ABV of 6% – seems too low to me. Anyhow Sonic Prayer IPA is Modus Operandi’s answer to the question: “Modus brew an awesome Red IPA but can they also brew an awesome American IPA”… well the answer is… umm, I’ll tell you *can opening sound* in a sec.
Poured from a 500ml can into a nonic pint.
A: Presents a fairly hazed, almost murky, deep amber body with a thin cream-coloured lace blanket for a head. Looks like the most delicious pint glass of orange juice I’ve ever seen, so points for that. 8/10.
S: The can says “passionfruit” and I say: Double check that, and let’s throw in a roger too! Piney notes along with a grassy/soft citric backdrop paint a picture of a bold and hoppy West Coast American IPA with an Aussie Galaxy hop overtone (aka the passionfruit – Galaxy is unmistakably passionfruity: I’ve brewed with it before). 9/10.
T: Damn this is one tasty bastard of a fresh hop locomotive that I’m all aboard on! Piney/citrus hops assail the front palate, leading towards a light/sweet passionfruit middle, and finishing with assertive bitter grassy/resin hops. Malts? In there somewhere, who cares about malts? Not I. This is a real taste-bud buster, like a beer designed by a hop-mad driven Barnes Wallis, a sort of bouncing hop-bomb if you will. Checking myself in for some palate-fatigue right now. In fact compared to Pirate Life IPA this tastes a tiny bit too bitter, it needs a bit more of that sweet/bitter balance mojo happening. 8/10.
M: Mid to heavy bodied and rolling in hop oils with a light but dense carbonation – a real heavy-hitter given the 6% ABV! 9/10.
D: I’ll be damned if this isn’t up there as one of the best West Cost style Aussie IPAs being brewed. It’s uncompromising in its assertive bitterness, to a fault one would say, but it definitely brought to mind Sierra Nevada Torpedo in a way that should be praised. The fact that Modus jammed so much hoppy goodness into this brew is testament to their ‘take no prisoners’ attitude when it comes to brewing… that’s the same attitude I fell in love with in their Former Tenant, and that’s the same attitude that will bring me back for more Modus, bravo! 10/10.
Food match: Grassy burps call for something lemongrassy and Thai methinks.