Stone – Cali-Belgie IPA

Tasting: June 12, 2011
Style: IPA

Took my two sons to their first baseball game today. It was a AA game – the Binghamton Mets at the Trenton Thunder (Yankees). In typical Met (or Met in training) fashion a real nail biter, but they won. Kids had a blast…it was a giveaway day (a webkinz), they wanted foam fingers, hot dogs and ice cream and basically everything they could see. We sat on the B-Met dugout and one of the players tossed us a ball at the end of the game. It was really a nice day out.

Settling in for a relaxing beer before dinner. This one is courtesy of John. It’s what I assume to be a California IPA with Belgian influence. I’ve had a lot of Great Lakes – Commodore Perry’s IPA of late. I remarked in my review of that beer that it was as if a Belgian Abbey decided to brew a California IPA. I going to guess that this ale will present the same sort of balance between — hops, yeast and grain. The label offers an encyclopedia length explanation — that says basically the same thing. Also from the label 6.9% ABV.

Light amber pour with a nice bright white head, strong lemon and pineapple on the nose. A second whiff reveals a banana and bread yeast note. My first sip is a meld of the yeast notes followed by peppery pinch of hops. Actually the hops remind me of juniper. The bitterness grows in strength and lingers on for quite some time. One small criticism would be the hoppiness eventually overtake the fruity yeast. I like the balance and I like the crossover in brewing styles – 90 points from me.

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