Double Wide I.P.A.

Thanks go out to stopbarking for the chance to crack this, 750 mL corked and caged, champagne style, dimple bottomed bottle. Batch D8240.
VERY complicated beer for me to review. I’m really not at all sure where I stand on this one but here goes…
Opening the bottle causes a pretty big pop and significant gun smoke. This is generally a good sign, although a little surprising for a double IPA (despite the bottle conditioning). Pour is dark orange, well carbonated affair with great lace and decent retention. The color is rich and it looks good.
Nose seems well versed in the pine and typical west coast notes that one might expect from the style, but then it also has a slightly solvent alcohol presence too – less attractive and it concerns me a touch.
The tastes really reflect what we found in the nose. Some very obviously heavy-handed hops (I was expecting that and it’s in line with e style), but also some significant alcohol presence. It burns a little, and the back end and aftertaste are not subtle at all. Puckering dry hops that are not quite as they should be – much too green and harsh, EVEN considering the style carefully. Despite this flaw the beer still retains a “moreish” quality, and the whole thin is a bit of a paradox. Strange stuff.
GREAT hoppy burps BTW which for me is a signature of a good DIPA.
The mouthfeel is good, but seems a little too carbonated for the style.
I really feel conflicted by this. On one hand this beer hits some style home runs nicely, but at the same time seems to have elements that are inconsistent. Another difficult thing for me to fathom properly is the drinkability. In one way I would put this right up there in the good category, but the odd, astringent aftertaste puts me off somewhat. I dunno, one of the most confusing and paradoxical beers in recent times.
Good stuff, makes me reflect upon my palate and experience; thanks Daniel!

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03/15/2009
Format:
bottle
ABV: 8.5 %
Appearance: 4.5
Taste: 3.5
Mouthfeel: 3.5
Smell: 3.5
Overall: 3.5
Total: 3.55
Series Name:
Year:

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