Portland, OR – While the weather is slowly shifting towards to warmer temperatures, so are people’s perceptions in regards to the color of their beer. It's a psychological fact that as craft beer drinkers, we crave something that matches the conditions both felt and seen. For us in the Northwest that means pale ales, india pale ales, and the like. Recently we had a chance to taste another contender for our favorite IPA, Hopworks India Pale.
As we have done in the past we reviewed the beer’s history as a reminder of what makes up a good IPA. Not centric to the Northwest or the West Coast the India Pale Ale get’s its influences from the United Kingdom and far off India, during a time when beer was as valued as water itself. Known for their English Pale Ales, the British Troops would expect ships carrying this ale to the shores of the Indian Colonies. Unfortunately beer was hard to transport and often didn’t last the trip, until the discovery of hops as a preservative. Today what you have in front of you is decades of American modification which results in an IPA style which is unique to the region.
With thoughts of sailing vessels and ships and rough seas, we cracked up a bottle of this beer.
Hopworks India Pale Ale, is a pale copper IPA that rests clear with an off-white foamy head which slowly dies leaving behind wreathes of lace inside the glass. There is a noticeable strong spicy quality, that works side by side with elements of lemon citrus (almost like a freshly peeled lemon), and minor caramel malt sweetness.
Sipping this beer you detect spice, bitter pine, minor earthy (almost grass like), character as well as more present grapefruit citrus that is accented by biscuit breadiness. Letting the beer rest for a bit clearly this beer isn’t heavy but at 6.60% Alcohol by Volume, it’s definitely not a ‘light’ beer, by any means.
Must Have, Hopworks India Pale Ale is definitely a beer worthy of the name India Pale Ale and one that shouldn’t be dismissed if you find it on the shelf or on draft somewhere. However, in the case of this beer you should drink it as soon as possible since the hops are what make this style worthwhile.
Thoughts by your Colleagues
About the photos’ author
Paul “Fruit Trees” Orchard, is an amateur craft beer enthusiast and amateur photographer. Throughout the many years in craft beer he is always carrying a camera (smartphone, digital, traditional) and is invites you to see that beer can also be exciting even if you can’t drink the photo.
In accordance with new FTC regulations regarding bloggers and endorsements, the aforementioned company has provided me a free sample that was used for research prior to writing this review.