Saturday, November 23, 2013

Crux Fermentation Project - Outcast IPA

Hey, ya, that's a nice IPA!
I'm an IPA lover. I'll admit it. The classic American India Pale Ale is my favorite beer style of all time. Just give me a beer with some big citrus juiciness, a massive amount of alpha hops bitterness and a healthy dose of malty deliciousness, and I'm a happy man.

Far too often, I taste an IPA that misses the mark by... just... this... much. Bummer. Apparently, there are a lot of ways to muck up an IPA. Yes, experimentation is the nexus of innovation, but I don't really like drinking experiments. I'm a Beer Guy, not a lab rat. So sad when I have to dump half a bomber of pricey suds down the sink.

Gratefully, that was not my experience today. Crux Fermentation Project (out of Bend, Oregon) has produced an IPA that really impressed the heck out of me. The beer is called Outcast and it comes with an ABV of 8%. The label advises that the stuff was brewed with Australian Galaxy hops. Let's get right to the review.

The beer poured into my glass a clear, golden orange color. The bright, white head rose up to a full finger thick and dissipated slowly. Plenty of sudsy lacing was left behind all over the glass.

Aroma was big on citrus, orange and grapefruit, with a light pine scent in the background. Tropical fruit aroma was also in the mix. Pineapple. Guava.

Taste gave a massive mouthful of grapefruit from the very first sip. Just a hint of dank funkiness and a solid sock of hops bitterness. More citrus and less tropical fruit was present in the taste than the nose initially suggested. If you love grapefruit flavor in an IPA, this is your beer. A light, herbal spiciness rounded things out nicely.

Medium mouthfeel with just a little bit of a chew to it. Hops bitterness left behind on the palate at the end. No hint of alcohol.

This is a really nice IPA. Very drinkable. The only thing I'd change would be that slightly heavy-handed grapefruit flavor. Nevertheless, it's an enjoyable brew and I'll certainly buy it again. The Wonder Beagle went crazy for the stuff. I had to make sure my glass was far out of her reach. I'm giving Outcast a BeerGuyPDX rating of 3 1/2 crushed cans out of 4 AND a Droolie.


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