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Sunday, August 25, 2013

"Big Hoppy" Double IPA

Today's IPA Month brew is a totally new one to me- "Big Hoppy" Double IPA from Cambridge House Brewing in Connecticut.

I've never heard of the beer or the brewery before stumbling upon it in a cooler at a local liquor store. The name caught my eye, "Big Hoppy", and immediately made me think of the Boston Red Sox "Big Pappi", David Ortiz. My mind often obsesses over things baseball and beer related, so this beer was a must buy. (Even if there was no actual connection between the two in this case)

I have found info on Cambridge House Brewing difficult to find. But, from what I gather, its a brew pub in Granby, CT that also bottles their beer for sale off site.

Big Hoppy Double IPA
Cambridge House Brewing
Granby, CT
9% ABV

Big Hoppy pours a dark, hazy brown, more like a brown ale than any IPA I've seen, with a nice frothy head of tan.

Smell is intense- Tons of dark fruit, raisins, plums, and lots of hops greet the nose with a wallop. Its nice, but it brings to mind a classic Belgian Trappist Style Double much more than an IPA. There's a mild boozyness in the nose as well.

Mouthfeel is super soft and creamy. Great body on this beer. Velvety smooth, like a great stout.

Taste is.....ahhh.... now THERE's the hops! Bitter, intense hop flavor greets the taste buds immediately, very abrasive at first, like biting into an over ripe grapefruit. Citrusy bitter is the focus here- the initial insanely intense grapefruit, along with strong orange peel and then grass. The flavors are strong and intense, and the dark fruit that is so pervasive in the nose is totally absent, (or perhaps overwhelmed by the citrus), from the taste.

Finish is wet and relatively clean given the intense flavors at work here.

An odd- but good- IPA. This is the polar opposite from most IPA's on the market. Where the current trend is West Coast Style bright, floral hoppyness with clean and crisp flavors, this one goes the other way. Intense dark fruit and a much more muddled taste, where the flavors are harder to pick out and there is no citrusy brightness to it, just the intense bitter wallop.

I liked it, and I do recommend it as a change of pace IPA. Very curious to try more from these guys.

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