In Honor Of National IPA Day We Present You With Our Top 5 Favorites
The India Pale Ale is one of the most beloved beers in all the brewing hemisphere and that’s why we couldn’t not take the chance to talk all about it on its very own national holiday. Happy IPA day, y’all! For those who aren’t familiar with this beer we’ll give you a short crash course. These beers have a tendency to be very hoppy, giving them a strong citrus or floral taste depending on what kind of hops was used. When we say strong, we mean strong. These beers have a tendency to be bitter and palatably overwhelming. For most it’s an acquired taste but once you get the taste down you can really learn to appreciate the multitude of complex flavors. We sure have. Depending on the country and even whether it was brewed on the East or West Coasts of the U.S., IPAs have a tendency to taste very different which contributes to have the fun of drinking them. Although they can be enjoyed all year round and in whatever climate you so choose, they’re a great summer beer because of the citrus/flower top notes which is why this is such a great time to have its national holiday! We’ve even included some india pale ales and their food pairings to give you an extra helping hand. IPA’s for all!
But enough with the chatter. Let’s hop to it (excuse us for the pun) and give you the list of some of our personal favorites.
Bell’s Two Hearted Ale
Bell’s is a Michigan-based brewery that’s quickly earning a name for itself outside the Midwest. According to their website, they distribute to 20 different states as well as Puerto Rico and Washington D.C. This IPA is especially popular for its smooth taste and defining hop and malt balance. When talking about this beer you can’t help but mention the lovely hints of grapefruit and pine that give it a wonderful little kick. It’s pretty much nearly impossible to mention IPAs and not talk about Two Hearted. It also consistently makes top lists and is pretty unanimously enjoyed by beer enthusiasts, something that’s difficult to come by. On a personal note, there’s something about this beer that doesn’t taste as overwhelming as some other IPAs can so we would definitely recommend it for any beginners. As far as food goes, we’d recommend a nice, cold bottle of Two Hearted to compliment a particularly large and juicy burger.
3 Floyds’ Alpha King
It’s impossible to talk about American IPAs without mentioning Alpha King. It should really always be mentioned though. As this famous brewery’s flagship bottle, Alpha King is now a name known across the world to not only be synonymous of pale ales but also just straight up good beer. With a slight sweetness of caramel and some serious notes of citrus, this beer is pretty much like a part in your mouth. This guy has won the Indiana brewery world-class ratings, numerous awards and quite a few sales. If you’re a fan of IPAs, I’m sure you’re aware of this one. For those who aren’t, you’ll definitely want to take a sip! Definitely crack open one of these when you’re enjoying some particularly flavorful, spicy food.
Arcadia Ales’ Hopmouth Double IPA
Remember how I said that IPAs have a tendency to taste totally different? Here’s a great example. Similar to Alpha King, this Michigan brew boasts notes of caramel and citrus but a taste test would not have you saying these are similar. Sure, they’re both IPAs and even have overlapping ingredients but it takes a lot more than that to brew a beer. Let’s just say they have different personalities. This wonderful double india pale ale gives the flavor a little extra oomph, making it all around more enjoyable. Although the double in front of the name might throw you off, it’s none the less another shining example of a great pale ale. The website recommends pairing this brew with gorgonzola cheese, Mediterranean foods, Thai, Indian or some good old fashioned spicy Italian sausage. Don’t mind if we do!
Deschutes Brewery’s Fresh Squeezed IPA
Taking a momentary trip outside of the Midwest brings us to lovely Pacific Northwest where this particular brewery is killing it with their Oregon India pale ale. Another one to consistently make top IPA lists, this refreshing little lady is one serious treat. The brewery extracts all of the beer’s flavor from the hops, never adding fruit or any other additives to give it that well-rounded flavor. What you get is a perfect tasting IPA that pairs especially well with seafood, tomato-based foods and sauces and many Italian foods.
Lake Bluff Brewing Co’s Derailleur IPA
This relatively new brewing company based in one of the northern suburbs of Chicago has already made a good name for itself in the Midwestern community. And so has its IPA, which according to beeradvocate.com is unanimously very good. With a little bit more mild aromas, Derailleur is another one of the great “beginner” IPAs for those whose palettes might not be as accustomed to be assaulted with a lot of hops. Pair this baby with some grilled meat and veggies or a big slice of pizza.
Revolution Brewery’s Anti-Hero
Alchemist Brewery’s Heady Topper
Hans Muller Sommeliebier’s Backbone Splitter
3 Floyd’s Arctic Panzer Wolf
Ballast Point’s Sculpin IPA
3 Floyd’s Space Station Middle Finger
Tighthead Brewery’s Irie IPA
Dogfishhead’s 120 Minute