Beer Buzz: Hoppy Alternatives
This guest post is by Roger Adamson, Beer and Spirits Specialist at Binnys Willowbrook. Roger is both a homebrewer and mixologist and is using his background in history to research and write a book on classic cocktails. Certain beers are hard to get. Plain and simple. One of the most requested seasonal rarities we see here at Binny's is Bells Hopslam. Demand for this Imperial IPA is so high that our supply tends to sell out just as soon as it arrives. Luckily, amidst a burgeoning craft beer scene there are several other excellent Imperial IPAs to choose from. We recently sat down and tried Hopslam next to other big juicy IPAs to see how they stacked up.
Sixpoint Hi-Res The fruity aroma bursting off this massive IPA is stunning. Your first sip will transport you to paradise with flavors of guava, pineapple, passion fruit and big bright citrus. This Triple IPA is a bit more hop forward than Hopslam, and what a hop bill at that. Amarillo, Centennial, Citra, Columbus, Galaxy, Mosaic, and Simcoe - oh my! Available in 4 pack cans to keep it nice and fresh. Dangerously drinkable at 10.5% Abv. Victory Dirtwolf It seems perplexing considering the style, but the adjective on everyone's mind after drinking Dirtwolf was refreshing. Brewed with Citra, Chinook, Mosaic and Simcoe hops, its hop profile is similar to Hi-Res displaying big tropical flavors including a great lychee nut character. So crisp and clean it almost drinks like a lager. While it's definitely lighter in body than Hopslam, it still clocks in at 8.5% abv. Great beer, incredible value. Greenbush Brother Benjamin Of the four beers, Brother Benjamin definitely has the most prominent malt profile. Like Hopslam, it is also brewed with honey which tends to offset the bitterness of the hops. This copper colored brew offers the nice balance of big malt and big hops. Fans of American Barleywines should give this one a try as there are some definite similarities. The Columbus and Cascade hops provide more peppercorn and citrus than the tropical fruitiness found in the other brews. Still an excellent brew in its own right. Check out the Beer Buzz for more on your favorite beers.