Thursday, April 4, 2013

Barnacle IPA (Lighthouse)

The first time I tasted this beer, I was seated on the floor of Eskimodave's apartment. No this was not some sort of beer cult worshiping. Dave didn't have enough chairs and I don't have an aversion to sitting on the ground. Dean passed around this bottle for the beer geeks to try. We were all astounded. It was delicious, fresh and an emerging style of beer. A wheat IPA?! It tasted great, but it will never catch on.
Currently, two wheat IPA releases have come through Victoria. I believe VIB struck first with the Flying Tanker. This brew will be returning in summer, as it is a hybrid of the currently available  Beachcomber Ale. Phillips followed with the Electric Unicorn. Perhaps they were both following the Belgian White by Lighthouse. Regardless, I digress. What do you get when you cross a familiar hop profile with added wheat malts? Two words: awesome! Wait for it, the bomber release of the Barnacle IPA is very soon.

Barnacle IPA (Lighthouse) = 9/10

The nose is familiar to everyone who likes to switch up their favourite beer. There is something else: cream of wheat. Tropical fruit aroma is still a major player but it is tempered with the creaminess that only wheat can provide. Gone is the gripping hop IPA bite, replaced by the creamy smooth southern half hop linger. Is this a hop showcase powerhouse: no. But it is something that will draw you in sip after sip.

I was recently asked about appropriate glassware selection: fricken Cicerones. I chose the quarter or 1/8 yard beer glass. This is the signature glass by Kwak. This is not correct glassware selection, but I found two of these glasses at a thrift store for $4! I had to show them off. What about food pairings? Perhaps a breaded sea bass with a fresh lemon squeeze. For the vegans out there: try a quinoa salad with arugula, Mandarin oranges and pine nuts. To make my neighbour happy, try it with the pulled pork poutine and corn bread.

I am really, really trying hard to hold it together. Dean promised me a growler of their upcoming maibock release, so I am emptying my growler of Barnacle IPA. Despite what you all think, I don't really drink a lot of beer. When I drink; I drink well. So a maibock? I love bocks: strong lagers are where it's at. There are currently no bright, spring time patio bocks. Unless you wanna suck back a Holsten big boy can. I sense a lack of cohesion, so ..good night.

Taste +4
Aftertaste +2
Alcohol Content +1 8%
Value +1
Appearance +1 (mine is a growler, which is awesome)

6 comments:

Dean said...

How long ago was that night, two years? That original cask of Barnacle was the first of my own beers brewed at Lighthouse, it gave rise to the Kiwi Cream Ale that used to be in our summer mixed pack, and spawned both Tasman and Switchback. It was the first time I met Left4Beer, John, Jonno and Dan. Although not identical (there are some varieties of NZ hop that even I don't have in my hop fridge), this bomber is a tribute to that first cask and and it's fitting that it carries the Barnacle name.

Ian Lloyd said...

At least 2 years+. Rather nice how great beer will bring people together.

Dave said...

http://imgur.com/R98EKmJ

Photo from the aforementioned tasting.

Dave said...

Jan 15th, 2011

John Bartle-Clar said...

That was an epic night. I remember it well and am looking forward to open the bottle in my fridge:)

John Bartle-Clar said...

That was an epic night. I remember it well. Looking forward to opening the bottle in the fridge...