Green Beacon The Hound of Hades IPA

Total Score: 6.5/10 HopFlower1Orange1Earth1Nonicpint1

Nice Cerberus shout out Green Beacon. This West-Coast style India Pale Ale: The Hound of Hades is brewed in collaboration of some of my all-time favourite dogs – Brewdog(s). Specifically Brewdog Australia, which is opening up in my current hometown of Brisbane, Australia. Which is f__king awesome for me and the many Brisbane Beer Barons out there in FB-Land. Hopefully, even though I wasn’t a fan of this beer [spoiler alert], there will be many future collaborations between these stalwart brewers at Green Beacon & Brewdog, as they are both favourite brewers of mine. Also the idea of freshly brewed Brewdog beer in Australia is getting me pretty excited.

Poured from a 375ml can into a nonic pint.

A: Clear golden body with a decent off-white cappuccino foam head that subsides leaving fancy lace-work inside the glass. Hmmmm, fancy-schmancy, it’s been a while since I’ve had an IPA that didn’t have the letters “NE” in front of it. 8/10.

S: Aromas got that classic American IPA thang happening: piney/citrus hops, with a bit of paw paw, an earthy tone, and a crisp cracker/biscuit malt base backing it up. Yep, total American IPA aroma profile, move along – nothing to smell here. 7/10.

T: Piney/earthy tones upfront, bit of blood orange rind in the mid-palate, centre caramel/dry cracker/biscuit malt hints, with a medium bitterness in the finish that lingers on in the aftertaste. Touch of noticeable spirit in the background, not good in a 7% ABV beer, this brew is really not showing that typical Green Beacon subtle finesse that I’ve grown accustomed to – it’s a rough beer given its pedigree. 6/10.

M: Body is pretty damn good though: almost medium-bodied with a dense-packed carbonation that has a reasonable (but not OTT) amount of carbon dioxide to it. 8/10.

D: All rather standard and a bit pedestrian for Green Beacon & Brewdog, I’m actually surprised they didn’t try anything radical here, but I guess it’s a case of “what’s old is new” for them in that while every man and his dog that can brew is limited releasing NEIPAs and they’ve decided to collaborate on “a good old IPA, what could possibly go wrong?” Well, when you’ve got a base IPA as good as Windjammer, and you’re brewing this (frankly amateur) IPA with legends like Brewdog, there’s something missing, or a problem somewhere along the line. Either way like I prefaced earlier: I am not a fan. GB’s last brew (Barbary Coast) wasn’t great either. 6/10.

Food match: Sticky BBQ pork ribs with coleslaw and grilled corn cob FTW.

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Mountain Goat The Delmont West Coast IPA

Total Score: 8.05/10 Grapefruit1 HopFlower1 Earth1 Nonicpint1

Another Rare Breed (i.e. single batch) from this fine brewer – worthy of the many accolades I have bestowed upon it, such as: “alf decent”, “yeah alright”, “good on a hot summers day”, and “better than a swift kick in the dangly bits”. I must admit ever since my first sip of Hightail Ale, and their many Rare Breeds, I have awaited each new goat with the anticipation of a school kid before the summer break, and this West Coast styled IPA, The Delmont, is no different.

Poured from tap into a Schooner.

A: Clear deep copper body with a thin wispy white head. Pretty decent body, the head is a little weak but we generally expect that with most beers over 6% ABV (and this is a hearty 7% brew). 7/10.

S: Citric/pine/earthy hops in plentiful abundance. There is a hint of a malt base in there as well, but rightfully so they take a back seat to what is hopefully an assertive hopping. 8/10.

T: Great big grapefruit/pine/earthy hop characters with a nice toasted biscuit middle, which finishes with a medium bitterness. Slightly more bitter hops than I like in the aftertaste, though this is generally expected with such a bold hopping. Surprisingly the alcohol feels much lighter than 7%, they hid it well at least. 8/10.

M: Medium bodied with a creamy carbonation. Spot on again Mr. Tap. 9/10.

D: Pretty damn drinkable, not as great as Feral’s Hop Hog or Little Creature’s Pale Ale (those are two of my all-time favourite Aussie brews as you may well know) but Mountain Goat has pulled together a big hoppy brew, shame it’s a Rare Breed. Another thing about this beer is it really sneaks up on you with the ABV, if they ever release this one again do yourself a favour and catch a bus in to your local craft pub (in my case The Durham, Kingston), take a load off and enjoy a few other good craft brews while you’re at it ;-). 8/10.

Food match: Again you can’t go wrong with Thai or Vietnamese cuisine with a nice hoppy IPA, or a decent Indian curry for that matter.

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