The Oregon IPA Invitational is moving along. This weekend we compared IPAs from Southern Oregon Brewing, Fort George, Gigantic, and Seven Brides Brewing. Of course, our tasters didn’t know which beer they were trying.
Up first we tried Nice Rack from Southern Oregon Brewing. The fruitiness was pretty intense; I got pineapple, orange pulp. I thought it was a great summer IPA. Tristan found it buttery and was the first to note the honey in the back. The finish was bitter and piney.
Second, Fort George’s Vortex IPA came out strong. Dad thought it was really nutty, walnuts? The bitter aftertaste really stuck around according to Dan. I figured it was Vortex, and I was right.
Next, I had the pleasure of revisiting Gigantic’s excellent IPA. It was the fruitiest of the bunch. Unlike Nice Rack, Gigantic’s IPA had a full, rounded grapefruit flavor. Great kick in the mouth. Tristan found it overwhelming, but I thought it was perfect.
And lastly, Frankenlou’s IPA from Seven Brides. Tristan sniffed out some raspberry, but summed up the taste in one word: “Blech!” I have to agree. This was not tasty. It was so dark and burnt. Just a bitter, bitter beer.
The scores gave a clear winner and loser. Gigantic took the prize. SOB and Fort George took second and third. Seven brides was the clear loser.
Here are some great barbecue beers. Light, refreshing, but still a bit bitter, and dry. Perfect for manning the grill. Have one or two of four. I’ve had the HUB Lager a few times, and Fort George’s 1811 was one the first beers on Whachudrinkin. Deschutes Twilight is a summer ale with a nice crisp lemon flavor and a crisp finish.
I’m revisiting the Sunshine OPA from Fort George. The first time I tried it, this beer was sort of off balance, but it was super fresh because I bought a four pack the first day they were available. I had another can last week, and this is the last one. There is a hint of citrus hops I didn’t remember. I’m still a little overwhelmed by the bitterness, but I taste more of the biscuity malt. But so bitter.
I’m drinking a Working Girl Porter from Fort George and eating burritos. For St. Patrick’s Day. The beer tastes mostly like dark black coffee and a little bitterness. The burrito has too much habenero salsa, so spicy. The whole thing is a weird combination.
Fort George just started canning their oatmeal pale ale, Sunshine. At the store someone asked me if it was like a hefeweizen. For some reason Sunshine sounds like a wheat beer. When I poured it, Chelsea said it looked like Blue Moon, super orange Just so you know, Sunshine is not a wheat beer. It’s bitter up front and full of citrusy hops. It’s not quite an IPA. It’s bitter but backed up with a hint of vanilla and caramel. It reminds me of Hair of the Dog’s Ruth, super bitter and super sweet with no transition in between.
Fort George’s Cavatica Stout perfectly fills my old Lyle pint glass perfectly. It’s super dark and creamy. You can taste the usual chocolate, but there is a bit of hop flavour in there to like a hint of orange peel. Oh and the alcohol.
None of these beers really merited a full pint, but they were interesting but not always in a good way.
Burnside Brewery Barrel Aged Permafrost: Smells like candy. Tasted like an aged Ninkasi IPA. Sweet and hoppy.
Upright Brewing, Provision: Smells like a sour beer, tastes like a sour beer, sort of like a beer/wine hybrid.
Gilgamesh Brewing, Chocolate Mint Stout: minty, chocolaty, what the fucky.
Fearless Brewing, Mjolnir Imperial IPA: The usual IIPA but too sweet.
Fort George, Kentucky Girl: Like an iced black coffee with cherries. Interesting and not terrible.
Lompoc Brewing, Cherry Christmas: Cherry wheat ale. Eh.
Deschutes Brewery, Twisted Winter: Fruity but dark, sour apple.
Lagunitas Brewing, Gnarly Wine: Now we know, barley wine is like an even sweeter imperial IPA.
I enjoyed another Fort George Vortex IPA at Dick’s Kitchen tonight. It’s another double or imperial or whatever with almost 8% ABV. It has an aggressive hop flavor with a bit of warmth and sweetness.
Celebrating the Astoria Bicentennial with Fort George’s 1811 Lager. Brewed in the old fashion, just like the pioneers used to make.