Next up, Founders Devil Dancer Triple IPA:
This beer seems to have received a lukewarm response from some. Whenever I see this with a big name beer (with 112 IBUs) that otherwise flies off the shelf, it gets me curious. I guess I’m a hype whore.
I think I have only encountered the elusive “Triple IPA” twice: Pliny the Younger back in ’06 and Moylan’s Triple Hopsickle. Actually, I don’t even know if it’s a recognized style. It’s single defining characteristic seems to be its righteous indignation begotten by you thinking you’re worth its time. That, and after you drink one you can’t taste anything for a couple hours. But a hophead and his money are easily parted. So, let’s do this thing.
It pours rust with a dense off-white head that recedes slowly and leaves a little lacing. It smells like an epic battle is about to be waged on your palate between rich citrus and resinous pine hops, sweet caramel and toasty malt, and alcohol.
It starts out somewhat amicably. It’s pretty sweet and malty with a rich, citrusy, resinous, oily hop character. And although it’s extremely bitter, it’s not unbearable. Then apparently my tastebuds returned from their lunchbreak. The sweetness becomes a little oppressive, the booze gets violent, and bitterness a little unnecessarily harsh. At one point the sweet, bitter, and alcohol hint at hop-flavored cough syrup. It’s way low on carbonation (perhaps that would have provided some quarter). And this thing is so dang big that United Airlines would make it purchase an extra seat.
An epic battle for my palate’s heart? No. Less like Ali vs. Frazier. More like AC Slater vs. Zack Morris.
The Haybag: I think you’re being a little harsh. It’s not bad. It’s just not quite worth the pricetag and difficulty to procure.