Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Hopsoulution to the Haze Craze?

First, is it still a craze if it has been around for years? I say no, but some people still look down on the "Hazebro" types as gimmick chasers. I get that anyone who can be labeled as some sort of bro is most likely annoying, but that shouldn't affect your opinion on the beer itself. Old school IPA brewers talk about their distaste for the style and mock it in much the same way as the non-IPA brewers used to say say, "Well anyone can brew an IPA, you can hide flaws with all the hops..." You know what you can't hide? A shitty-tasting IPA. And I've talked to more than one (two) brewers who found the hazy style to be more challenging than expected to nail down. So if it's a gimmick, gimme more.

THAT BEING SAID, this post is to say that there's still hope for you who long for more of the clear IPAs, and from a trusted veteran and innovator in the IPA world: Bell's has re-introduced (year-round in six states that aren't near us) Hopsoulution DIPA to the Albuquerque market. It's not hazy. In fact, it's amber in color, which worried me at first. I had flashbacks to so many easy-to-brew darker IPAs that tasted like malty messes. Thankfully, Hopsoulution benefits from a lower than normal (for Bell's) DIPA ABV of 8%. This, along with a deft use of hops, makes this a welcome addition to crowded shelves. It's got traditional pine mixed with some of the tropical notes of today's IPAs. Really a pleasant drinker for those who aren't adverse to drinking a beer you can see through. And if you are, there's always Bell's Official Hazy.

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