Widmer Brother's W '10
Style: Black IPA
Serving Type: Bottle
Purchased at Safeway $7.99 (6 pack)
Read more about Widmer Bros at Beer Advocate.
Aroma: Signature Widmer hop profile with citrus aroma up front and what I always perceive as a slight hint of earth/grassy notes in the background. There may be a small amount of roast coming through in the nose but it is nearly all hops, nicely done hop aroma but not a big hop nose.
Appearance: Widmer describes this as a "Pitch Black IPA" and I certainly wouldn't argue. This is a coal black beer with a tan head that holds fairly well, but does drop to a thin crown relatively quickly. The sticky head holds some lacing along the glass. The only chance at seeing through the blackness is near the top where the beer blends to a ruby-brown.
Flavor: Initial hint of citrus hop bitterness followed quickly by a dark bread-like malt flavor. Pumpernickel bread wouldn't be too far off. Slightly grainy but not unpleasant. The bitterness comes back pretty strong in the finish with a nice citrus bite on the tongue. Lingering bitterness lasts until the next sip.
Mouthfeel: Light body with prickly carbonation. The body leans to somewhat watery at first but it does round out some through the middle. This Black IPA finishes clean and crisp with a nice hop reminder.
Overall: An easy drinking IPA that helps define this seemingly new style of IPA. The body is what I find most lacking with this brew, I'd like to see more richness here. It's worthy to a hop lover but don't expect to be bowled over by this one. That being said, the more I drink this beer the more I like it. It's very well rounded and while the mouthfeel isn't the biggest it's an IPA that doesn't disappoint on the hops. If I didn't hate the word "drinkability" so much, I'd say this W'10 rates high on that list.