Total Score: 8.85/10
Best of both worlds or total disaster? I want you to do me a favour: Go out and buy this beer. Don’t question me! Do it! When you get home BEFORE you crack open the bottle and pour that delightful amber fluid into a glass I want you to open your Spotify/iTunes/Google Play/Whatever and cue up a little old [ahem: new] ditty by a band called The Killers, track name “The Man”. Once the track is cued and those speakers are turned up as far as you can without waking up your neighbours you’re ready to crack open Stone Mocha IPA and pour it into your favourite beer glass. Press “play” and begin by inhaling that intoxicating oxymoron of an aroma… take your first sip. That’s right: You’re The Man. The Stone Mocha IPA Man.
Poured from a 355ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.
A: Hazed copper-amber body with a tasty big 2 centimetre off-white head that leaves sci-fi landscape lacing on the side of the glass as it recedes. Great head retention for a 9% ABV, this brew looks almost completely innocuous… it begins! [said in my best Barney Gumble voice]. 8/10.
S: This is a beer where I thought “No way is that going to work – coffee and IPA hops? Nope, not going to go down well at all”. Well in this case I am more than happy to be proven wrong – Sharp herbal resin/cannabis hops, roasted coffee bean with a touch of cold drip coffee and a hint of cacao nibs, MWA! *Italian kissing of fingertips sign* Stone definitely struck on something with these overly earthy aromas – it’s reminiscent of a Red IPA, but it’s got a little sumptin-sumptin going on. 9/10.
T: It’s just like Ruination and Xocoveza had a child! Though before you get too excited – this is the lesser sum of one parent, and that parent is Xocoveza, the flavour never quite reaches the glory of Xocoveza (yes, I love Xocoveza). Profile is: Roasted coffee bean upfront, mid-palate piney/resin/cannabis hops, hint of citrus, leading to an earthy/bitter cacao nib finish – which has a fairly restrained medium bitterness. The character of this brew is intriguing and warrants multiple sips. 9/10.
M: Medium bodied, reasonable amount of carbonation… almost a little too much, with a slight creaminess (more creaminess would be ideal). 8/10.
D: Damn tasty, damn easy-drinking for 9% ABV, and damn (damn)! This brew really put me in my place – I’ve long scoffed at coffee IPAs, now I have seen the stony light, and it is goo-od. *presses play again on The Killers The Man* 9/10.
Food match: Cigars and spicy Thai cuisine unite!