Greenpoint Beer & Ale
Bathmophobia is the fear of stairs or steep slopes. It’s a common neurosis among domesticated animals and certain U.S. presidents. But those who suffer from it need not fear this 8% ABV imperial IPA hopped and double dry-hopped with Jarrylo, Citra and Mosaic; it’s a slow, smooth downward grade from the front of the sip (packed with chopped scallions and cilantro, plus a quick burst of dank weed midpalate) to the placid finish of fluffy wheat and sweet lemon squares. The bitterness is incredibly clean and just big enough to balance the bready closure, and the body is like sipping a cloud. Only problem: With just a few sips of the beer left, we developed cenosillicaphobia—the fear of an empty glass.
The Veil Brewing Co. / Monkish Brewing Co.
The upside-down label on this collaborative DIPA makes us feel ahead of the curve—we like to store all our cans of New England IPA bottoms-up to keep those lovely hop particles spread throughout the beer. And there are a lot of them to disperse in this one: It’s dry-hopped four separate times with Galaxy, Citra, Simcoe and Mosaic (The Veil says it’s hands down the most hops they’ve ever put in a beer). The result is an absurd aroma overflowing with grilled pineapple, then papaya, then dank weed, then pineapple, then tangerine, then grass, then even more pineapple—there are new notes to pick out upon each visit. Sips lead with mown grass before switching right back into the tropical-sweet wheelhouse, with each swallow like biting into a pineapple, rind and all. The breakfast pastry base does a decent job of obscuring the booze (9% ABV), and though the beer’s chewy and a bit sweet, you’d deserve a smack in the face for letting any drop of this go in sink.
Clouds of Delusion
Pure Project Brewing
We’ve only tasted two beers so far from San Diego’s year-old Pure Project (this double IPA and Diamond Dust, an IPA), and it’s already one of our favorite new breweries. The quality of Clouds of Delusion, brewed with Nelson and Mosaic hops in collaboration with another badass California brewery, Moonraker Brewing Co., is a good indication why. The nose is like sweet lemonade garnished with basil and green onion sprigs, while the palate puts the focus on the allium with notes of chopped Walla Walla and green onions plus pineapple chunks. The finish, stuffed with sugary citrus and doughy wheat, is a little sweet, but there’s just a hint of alcohol warmth and a pleasant capsaicin zip from the hops.
Fieldwork Brewing Co.
If that name alone doesn’t send you back to days spent sitting in front of your Super NES trying to dodge Hadouken blasts, watch this and then pop one of these pretty cans. The flavor’s a quick, compact wallop of whipped cream, crystallized pineapple and wheat thins in onion dip. The balance is a bit cracker-sweet at the finish, but the body is so light, the alcohol so well-hidden and bitterness is so clean that this drinks more like a golden ale. It’s far, far too easy to finish a can, especially at 8.5% ABV. Like Sagat’s special move: Just a few hits and it’s lights-out. TIGER!