The last of the beer trinity purchased earlier in the week, the Cannery Brewing Company’s INDIA PALE ALE promised to be the best of the bunch. At least, it promised me that, with its slightly higher alcohol content (6%). My parents, not big I.P.A. fans, were less hopeful, but that’s an aside. Cannery’s own website advised saving the I.P.A. for last (amber first, nut brown next, then I.P.A.), thus building the whole tasting experience toward a massive crescendo that I expected would leave me weak with joy.
And so it did, my fellow inebriates, but for reasons that bear explanation. Let’s start with the most obvious: I loved this beer. It was strong, hoppy and uncomplicated. With four hop varieties, it delivered the I.P.A. punch that fans appreciate—sultry bitterness with a fizzy snap. Yum!
But here’s the best part. My parents almost couldn’t stand it! Which obviously meant more for me. My dad actually bitched the whole time about this splendid I.P.A. He said it tasted like the white part of grapefruit, but without the fruitiness. He couldn’t decide whether it was bitter or sour, and with a few mouthfuls left he added honey to it as an experiment. This was very win-win for a bear like me, especially since he abandoned his concoction to my grateful tastebuds.
My mum reported the I.P.A. tasted like elastic bands and earwax. This makes me suspect she has pica, that illness that compels people to eat weird things. I wanted to ask, What else have you been eating, mum—chalk? eye snot? Seriously, my parents do not have a clue how to taste liquor.
I liked this beer a lot, but not as much as the AMBER ALE, and not nearly as much as the NUT BROWN ALE—the best of the bunch for my money. It’s a classic I.P.A., but there are certainly better examples out there. Still, I enjoyed it enough to RECOMMEND buying the sampler threesome and having your own tasting. If only just to step outside your comfort zone.