bottle-o-rama! and All You Need Is Beer present…
Siren / Cigar City / Grassroots Neither Imperial IPA, 8.3% abv.
Cast: Lee (of bottle-o-rama! That’s this Tumblr, woot!)
Cameron (of All You Need Is Beer, a place of happiness and wonder)
Lee: Everything is better with friends, and beer in particular. In the first part of a double joint review with my online beer chum, Cameron, we’ll be looking at a collaboration between Berkshire’s Siren Craft Brew, Florida’s Cigar City Brewing,and Vermont’s Grassroots Brewing, an international experiment between like minded beerists with a rather interesting premise;
"Following prohibition, the proliferation of homogenised beers throughout America developing into the same, some may say tasteless, beers were made using adjuncts like corn and rice. We wanted to show that using corn, a fantastic beer is still possible."
Pilsner malt and corn were used in the brew which also had lime flower honey added to it, and the hop list is positively rammed with a total of seven US hop varieties. I am intrigued, lets get this party started, eh Cam?
Cameron: Indeed… The murky straw-tinted gold flounders into the glass gifting some pretty tropical aromas. Lemons seem the most pronounced in this particular bouquet and a few specks of sweet honey.
L: I’m hypnotised by the rampant bubblegum-white head. The lacing is amazing, clouds of fluffy awesomeness form skyscapes on my glass. Citrus and tropical fruit aromas tumble forth with plenty of biscuity malts, and yeah, the lemon zest is most noticeable.
C: In the mouth and it’s dryer than a summer speak-easy during prohibition. That’s gotta be the Pils malt, right?! Blimey it’s bitter and refreshing too…
L: Those tropical fruits are more pronounced in the flavour, with sweet passionfruit and pineapple joining the lemon and lime for a bit of dirty dancing on my tongue. Just as the juicy fruits begins to overwhelm me the big malty bouncers step forth… and join in! The honeyed Pilsner malt is unmistakable and the crisp, dry feeling is indeed very Pils like. The hoppy bitterness finally reveals itself in all its glory for the long, lingering finish.
C: I totally found that too, with the IPA tropical remix filtering through the initial citrus radio edit. The sappy honey from the malt is a total winner and that bitterness is a 12” extended club mix - it just goes on and on. Truth be, I personally found it closer to a hoppy Pilsner. And that ain’t no bad thang!
L: The medium body and med-soft carbonation help to remind you that it is an Imperial IPA, but I can absolutely see where Cam’s coming from when he says it reminds him of a hoppy Pilsner. It’s an incredibly smooth beer, which I’m at least partly putting down to the addition of honey to the brew, and it somehow manages to totally hide the alcohol, you’d never guess this was an imperial strength brew. Yup, I really rather like it.
C: Finishing up and re-reading the label jogs my memory that this was made using corn and so flipping the bird to those faceless generic fizz giants. If independent breweries like Siren, Grassroots and Cigar City can make those ingredients taste this good, then why would you ever drink anything from the big suds sharks again? Spread the word people!