Wolf Of The Willows Wolf Blood Red IPA

Total Score: 8.15/10 HopFlower1Earth1Biscuit1Tulipglass1

“YES!” He cried emphatically, another Australian craft brewer had taken up the mantle of brewing Red IPAs. This time in collaboration with Bloodhound bar Brisbane, one of Doc’s favourite craft bars. The anticipation was palpable as he gazed upon the little brown bottle. His hand darted out and grabbed the bottle and he proceeded triumphantly to the counter. Whilst waiting for another customer to be served Doc admired the bottle label depicting the Wolf of the Willows Roman she-wolf with its head decapitated and blood spilling from it “Clever marketing!” he thought as the cashier took his money and proffered a bag. “No” said Doc, we must save the environment after all. One bag at a time.

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Amazing colour on this one: Almost ruby red, deep copper clear body with a few yeast particles floating around and a dense 1 centimetre beige head that slowly disintegrates leaving a blanket on top. Look at this beauty! 9/10.

S: Piney/earthy hops straight from the off, like a forest floor in a glass. Citric hints struggle to wrest this brew from the soiled grasp of its earthy features, yet for once I am more than happy to encounter a total redwood forest of a brew. Pretty spectacular example of a Red IPA aroma here, I really can’t get past how fresh this brew is. 9/10.

T: In typical WOTW fashion this is a more subtle beer than you were expecting. Flavours favour that piney/earthy combo, with citric notes, dry cracker middle, spicy herbal notes, and tannic dry/herbal bitterness finish. In comparison to Modus Former Tenant, which I know is exactly what you want to hear this being compared to (being the GOAT Aussie Red IPA), it is missing quite a bit of sweetness, yet this is still great – just a different angle to the Modus. 8/10.

M: Nearing medium bodied, some hop oils and a thin but dense carbonation. 7/10.

D: Yep, WOTW as always have managed to put up something unique – at least this is probably one of the piney/earthy/spicy and tannic takes on a beer I’ve tasted, and bizarrely it reminded me of the first time I tried Orval – it’s a beer that makes you go “What the ..? Ok… now I get it” and it continues that whole WOTW wine/beer dichotomy that they began with ISA, and throws in that XPA aridity to boot. Frankly it’s hard to imagine WOTW approaching this style any differently than they always do – which in itself is different, cheers to that! 8/10.

Food match: Cheese platter this baby all the way.


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