Pure Hoppiness by Alpine

Tasting: August 23, 2014
Style: IPA
Beer #: 591

© 2014 popsonhops

© 2014 popsonhops

Pure Hoppiness

As a result of trades or collecting trade pieces, I’ve found myself with an abundance of India Pale Ales (IPA). Now, I find myself racing against time to enjoy these beers at peak flavor. You see, hop-centric beers like IPA have four enemies: air, light, heat, and age. While I can control the first three variables – I can’t fight age. How long should an IPA last? Ask ten people, you’ll probably get ten answers. While some brewers will spell out an enjoy by date – most don’t. There really isn’t an easy answer and a lot of it comes through experience. I’ve had some bottle-conditioned IPA and double/triple IPA (like Hopslam) that will maintain it’s hop profile for up to four months, while beers like Heady Topper lose it after three to four weeks. My rule of thumb is 6 weeks and I always make a point to examine bottling dates if the brewer provides it.

Via a trade, I received three IPAs from Alpine Beer Company – IPA, Duet and this bottle of Pure Hoppiness. Although Duet has received critical acclaim – my bottle did not match the hype. Since the bottle was labeled without a bottling date, I believe that my trade partner may have pawned off an old bottle. The bottle of Duet was a bonus to my trade and I guess I can’t complain but this bottle of Pure Hoppiness was the cornerstone of my trade and I hope he wasn’t devious.

A side note – a number of Alpine labels depict local landmarks and Pure Hoppiness features The Alpine Inn, a Swiss Chalet inspired restaurant. Also from the label – 8% ABV.

This bottle may be nearing the end of its shelf life – but it really is good and quite enjoyable. I’ve had fun sipping on it while cooking dinner for the family. I get some very nice hop flavors – dank, floral, pineapple and mango but they are somewhat mellow and a little overrun by the bitterness which may indicate some age. Not everyone can drink a beer a week old – and a lot of times beer hangs out in stores for far too long. Mouthfeel is still nice with low carbonation and a rich syrupy viscosity. Still well balanced. All in all I like it and will put Pure Hoppiness at 93 points.

The bottle has a code on the bottom 31111C0051140 if anyone can decipher this code with a bottling date let me know.

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