Out of the loop

A milk carton of IPA.

I ended up sat in Bottles & Books on my own on Friday night, hovering around the edge of a conversation about beer that made me feel totally ignorant and out of touch.

Bottles & Books is our local craft beer phantasmagorium, with fridges full of cans, a wall of bottles, and a few taps of draught beer served by the third and two-thirds measure.

On Friday, the discussion turned to IPA, and it was when I heard this sentence that I knew I was out of my depth:

Brut IPA died a death fairly quickly, didn’t it? And NEIPA just tastes a bit… old fashioned. It’s all about the Hudson Valley style now.

Hudson Valley? Is that a region? Yes, but it’s also a brewery, as profiled in this article, which has a headline apparently designed to annoy conservative beer geeks who already think brewing has been fatally compromised by the amateur tendency:

Hudson Valley Brewery Makes Beer Based on Instinct, not Instructions

Sour IPA is, I gather, the long and short of it, and sure enough, when Jess and I went to the Left Handed Giant taproom yesterday, there was one on the menu.

We gave up trying to stay on top of trends years ago but there was something intoxicating about all this new information, all the names and details, that made me think… Should we try?

The odd educational eavesdropping session probably wouldn’t do us any harm, at least.

15 thoughts on “Out of the loop”

      1. The article felt incomplete when I read it this morning. I think I was expecting you to try the sour IPA and describe it! My bad probably.

  1. Reading the article mentioned, it seemed more like an advertisement than anything else. Kind of like the when a new brewery opens with the novel approach of “…using only the finest ingredients to hand craft the highest quality beers…”.

    1. you forgot the obligatory ‘we brew beers we like to drink’ & the ubiquitous ‘hop forward’.

  2. I have it on good authority that this is the year of craft lager (Imperial, DDDH, Session etc etc etc). And also pushing the mild envelope (Glitter, Fruit syrup, Upside Down Cake etc etc). Personally I can’t wait until we get beers that taste like vintage cleaning products – a Vim IPA, Fairy Liquid stout and a not-lambic that smells of a pine fresh car deodorant

    1. Oakham have been treading the path of Sqezy Lemon washing-up-liquid-scented beer for many years already, surely.

  3. Brett IPA’s have been a thing for a while, while brett != sour, are we talking the same or similar thing here?
    Did I completly miss the brut IPA trend while I was under a rock, are they passe so soon, I would think their dryness would be appreciated in spring/summer, as a clean quencher.

  4. Surely there is room for experimental brewing, and those who like to taste those beers? As well as for the the traditional? I feel like I’ve dropped in on a brewing Brexit situation, or something. Intolerance. Which exists on both sides, no doubt. I think there’s good and bad new beer and good and bad traditional beer. Choose what you like and allow others to do the same. We are fortunate to have loads of choice, and it isnt the traditionalists who have enabled that. And new brewers are also going back in time and brewing historic recipes. Like Brett IPAs. This griping doesn’t look good. I dont get it tbh. Maybe I’m misreading the situation.

    1. Clib; please keep your eloquent and well-balanced opinions to yourself in future.

      Such reasonable commentary has no place in the 2019 beer debate…..! 😉

  5. I find it ironic that the guys who “Makes Beer Based on Instinct, not Instruction” are the same ones who famously told a room full of professional brewers that they sour their beers using Clostridium.

    Welcome to the future of “craft” beer.

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