Thursday, January 21, 2010

Moylan's Brewery IPA

India Pale Ale
Purchased at 99 Bottles in Federal Way, WA

Read about Moylan’s Brewery

I first read about Moylan's IPA on The Hedonist Beer Jive and from the description I decided I needed to check out this hoppy concoction. During my next visit to 99 Bottles I restrained myself and only picked up this bottle and one bottle of Goose Island Bourbon County Stout, which quite frankly my wife and I can't get enough of. Love that beer!

Aroma: My first impression of the aroma was oddly enough some skunk. Though it is subtle, it's certainly noticeable. Even after a few good stabs of my nose in the glass I was still getting this off aroma. I can only imagine this is from shipping or storage and at some point this bottle was exposed to sunlight. Aside from this there is a nice grassy hop aroma with caramel malt in the background. A sweet honey scent is also detectable in the nose. The skunk seems to fade though is detectable throughout. I have read that skunk aroma will “blow off” with time in the glass.

Appearance: A pale golden straw with a translucent chill haze. Like looking at sunlight through a wheat field, this is an excellent color for an IPA. With a vigorous pour the beer forms a thin but steady white head.

Flavor: Initial blast of earthy hop flavor and bitterness up front. As this fades the flavor moves toward a sweet carmel malt profile that follows with a biscuit and light white bread character. Bitterness flows through strongly with a citrus bite toward the end before finishing with a crisp snap of grapefruit hop bite. The finish is quite dry with lingering hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light body with light carbonation. The bitterness seems to fill the mouth adding to the impression of mouthfeel which I haven't experienced in an IPA to my recollection. Carbonation is smooth and dances off the tongue just enough to keep the bittering bite clean and fresh.

Overall: Aside from the initial unpleasant waft of skunk, which is subtle enough not to carry into the flavor, this beer is an excellent balance of sweet light bread malt with an array of hop flavor. From noble earthy hop flavor to the west coast citrus bitter pop, this IPA explores the range of what hops have to offer with each sip. Moylans does an excellent job of accentuating the hops and at times leaves you feeling as if you’re chewing on the hop cones themselves.

I'll have to pick up another bottle of this, perhaps closer to the source to see if I run into the skunk aroma again. I’m guessing I won’t.

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Beer enthusiast and advocate. Recognized beer judge and traveler of west coast beer destinations.