Monday Beer Club – Meeting #9

I’ve realized that I’m terrible at identifying bitterness in beer … as least the bitterness as measured by IBU (International Bitterness Units). Depending on when hops are added to a beer they can impart more or less IBUs. For example, dry hopping, where hops are added after the boil, and perhaps even after fermentation, adds lots of hop flavour, but virtually no IBUs. We think (perhaps) that I am tasting the hop alpha acids and confusing that flavour with IBU bitterness. Maybe. Perhaps. But who really knows. So, we are trying to explore, with four beers with different IBU ratings. Our objective is to but the beers in order, from least-to-most IBUs. As always, this isn’t as easy as it sounds.

The Agenda for today’s meeting.

Number 1: (far left) This beer was cloudy yellow. The nose reminded us of pineapple juice and the taste was a full rich “juicy” mouthfeel that faded to a clear bitter aftertaste. At least we thought it was bitter. I rated this the 3rd most bitter of the flight. I was wrong of course, but close … it was 2nd most bitter It’s a NEIPA so it did have significant dry hopping, which may explain what we were tasting.

In case you’re wondering, this beer is “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” which I highly recommend.

Number 2: Lightly cloudy with a hint of peach colour, and we also got stone fruit on the nose. This beer didn’t have as much mouthfeel as the first one, and definitely more bitterness. The taste was cleaner and more astringent on the tongue. We rated this the most bitter, and … we were right.

This beer is Live Session Vol 4.

Number 3: This beer was cloudy and the colour of pink grapefruit. We could taste peach with moderate sweetness initially, but with a clean aftertaste. We rated this as the 2nd most bitter, but it was actually the least bitter, but again, a NEIPA style, so lots of dry hopping.

This beer is Walkin’ on Sunshine, a Brew Revolution classic.

Number 4: This beer is clear with a hint of amber colour. We detected a bit of earthiness in the aroma. The taste had a light sweetness … almost like caramel or honey. It had a lovely balances taste that maintains that balance as the flavour fades away – very nice. We rated this beer the least bitter, but it was actually the 3rd most bitter.

This beer is Kashmir, a Norwegian Pale Ale, or perhaps an American Pale Ale? Either way, it’s very tasty.

So, we got one right, one very wrong, and two were close. Clearly we need more practice…

Published by If It Was Today

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