Stone DaySlayer India Pale Lager

Total Score: 7.8/10 HopFlower1Peppercorns1CutGrass1Nonicpint1

Yepski: Stone DaySlayer India Pale Lager. I haven’t been a fan of this newfangled “India Pale Lager” style as hops and Lager don’t generally go well together for me (due to the sharp bitterness the hops seem to bring in all the IPLs I’ve tried thus far). But this is Stone. Plus it’s got a wee bit of age on it now so: hop fade. Maybe DaySlayer will be just the beer to slaaaa-ke my thirst. Either that or it’s going to be the shittest beer I’ve had yet from Stone, and damn that is one short list – Stone brew pretty awesome beers. Oooo, featured hops are Motueka and Amarillo – I love those guys. Scratch that stuff I said about how this might be Stones shittest beer: Motueka and Amarillo says otherwise.

Poured from a 650ml US bomber-sized bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Slight hazed golden straw body with a nice white cappuccino foam head on top. Bit ‘o lacing, bit ‘o head retention, she’s looking sweet – not literally sweet, figuratively sweet. 8/10.

S: Definite hop fade, oh well, it happens. Aroma is citrus notes, dry cracker and bread middle, peppery/spicy notes towards the back. Hint of grassy hops in the finish as well. S’alright, not quite the heady hop face-cannon it would have been fresh, but still decent enough. 7/10.

T: Hellooo! Piney and spicy/grassy hop characters right upfront, bit of a dry cracker/bread middle (as expected) with a peppery/herbal note towards the finish, which is mid to light bitterness, mellowed with age. Overall the flavour combo is interesting because it’s all grassy/spicy/peppery/herbal – it’s like eating a bowl full of rocket. I happen to love rocket (I eat it practically every day #superfood). Flavour-wise this has been the nicest IPL I’ve encountered – trust in Stone my friend! 8/10.

M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation and even a smidge of creaminess, nice work. 8/10.

D: Would like to have tried this fresh, but I’m still working on my DeLorean-based time machine… soon I’ll have enough Plutonium to power that thing, till then I can wonder about the DaySlayer that might have been. However till then, the DaySlayer that is: is rather tasty. Tasty enough for me to consider buying another marked-down bottle of this from my local (you see it’s been reduced in price because of the best by date: win-win here) IMO this is a tasty beer with a bit of hop fade that I would def drink again. Stone you ripper! 8/10.

Food match: Hard to go past pizza when thinking of rocket.

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Blackman’s Brewery Juicy Banger IPL

Total Score: 7.25/10 WhiteWine1Flowers1CutGrass1Nonicpint1

India/Imperial Pale Lagers are a fairly recent thing and as such they’re not listed yet in the BJCP Style Guide (2015) and fall into the catch-all category of “mixed-style beer”. Also the last IPL I had was 4 Pines Grapefruit IPL, and if you’ll pardon my fruit-related puns, that one ended up a little pear-shaped. However I have faith that Blackman’s Juicy Banger will be rather tasty, why? Because their core beers Arthur, Reginald and Angry Reg are also rather tasty. They can’t afford to drop the ball now when they’re doing so well. Mental note: Have drunk Reginald IPA but not actually reviewed it yet… also I’m slightly disappointed they didn’t give this brew a first name like “Keith” or “Bruce”, oh well, time for Juicy Banger!

Poured from a 330ml can into a Stei… pint? Not sure which glass to use, nonic pint it is then.

A: Cloudy saffron body with a decent white cappuccino foam head that stays put at about half a centimetre. Rather tasty looking, and pale brew – ticks all the boxes, especially the box I like ticking: [is cloudy?]. 8/10.

S: Grassy, white wine, Champagne-like with floral/citric hops notes. It is a playful and moreish aroma that invites you to immediately take a sip. Though it is a touch (JUST A TOUCH!) muted and it would be better if it was amped up a little. But hey we’re nit-picking now, I bet it tastes the bomb, like a juicy banger bomb (were such a thing to exist). 8/10.

T: All of the above flavours, hint of grain as well, mingle together on the palate which begins semi-sweet, follows through to hoppy bitter notes and finishes sharp and dry. It’s an interesting combo – I like the slant on vinous flavours, reminds me of Wolf Of The Willows ISA (India Saison Ale) in that regard. One thing to note though – when a beer is this dry in the finish hops can add a sharply bitter aftertaste: this has that aftertaste. So if you are adverse to that this might be a bitter pill to swallow [literally]. 7/10.

M: Mouthfeel is fine – almost medium bodied with a dense carbonation, slightly burpy on my patented Burp Scale™ or BS for short. 7/10.

D: Floral, dry and tasty, though with a sharp bitter aftertaste due to what I mentioned above. IPL is still a style which will take a while to catch on, it’s like a Hoppy Stout – flavours which can be discordant make a brew a sum of lessor parts. That said I didn’t mind this Juicy Banger so much, it was alright. 7/10.

Food match: Fresh flavours like a chicken crunchy noodle rainbow salad.

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