Race Weekend might be over, but us race fans are still in the process of coming down from the high that goes along with the annual Indianapolis 500 and the corresponding inundation of red neck, beer swilling, race fans! Or as I like to call them, family!
Every year my Uncle Billy (fraternity family) and I have a craft beer off. I always try and find something he hasn't had that is better than everything he brought and vice versa. I get blown out of the water about 50% of the time. This year however I have TWO secret weapons, Bitch'n Camaro and Jungle Room!
Cut to this month. Bitch'n Camaro comes out. I have heard rave reviews from hop heads around town! All I heard was "Dude, you should so try this!" Other comments that have been thrown around were "I have heard this will be the next bottled in the Kings Reserve Series!"
I have been curious to see what the compare and contrast between a Rye x2IPA and a "regular" x2IPA were. The topic was spawned from discussions with The Big Guy and others about up and coming articles for the site...
Huh... well then... (Beer Science experiment + two x2IPA's from the same brewery) / Head to head article on differences between x2IPA styles * Race party one ups... As Gru would say "Light Bulb!" The Perfect storm!
Creation: Bitchin' Camaro
Style: Imperial Red Rye DIPA
Masterminds: Sun King Brewing
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Hops: American Citrus
Availability: Seasonal, The Month of MAY! Draft only.
Drinkability: Drinks like a light single Rye IPA, but has a little bit more under the hood. Very sessionable, but the ABV's will reign you in.
Served... Cold right out of the BRÄULER
Pours...Clear amber, more on the red side of amber. Thanks Rye!
Head...Fingers width that sticks around with minimal lacing.
Nose...Smells like a great DIPA should... Pronounced citrus hop nose with a subtle rye spice to give your pallet a que that it isn't a normal DIPA.
Body... Light to medium body. Notes of caramel and citrus. Malts really balance it out. The rye gives it a great mellow spiciness.
Finishes... Semi-Dry with a rye kick that cuts the typical bitterness associated with DIPA's.
Style: Imperial DIPA
Hops: Hops from Grapefruit Jungle + Cream Dream + American Citris
Availability: Specialty, brewers discretion, draft only
Drinkability: Goes down easy, almost too easy. Very sessionable. High ABV's are killer though. "Welcome to tha JUNGLE!"
Served...Cold right out of the Hydro Flask.
Pours...Clear Amber, leaning to the lighter side.
Head...Mustered a finger and a half of head with normal lacing throughout. Lost a lot of the carbonation from when I had it fresh off the tap. Not surprised, sitting in cold storage for 3 months I expected this.
Nose...Still had the tropical explosion of fruits and hops, just toned down to 9 from eleven... Notes of pineapple/mango/peach with a more subtle touch of toffee.
Body...Light to medium body. Went from a potent 11 of citrusy pineapple/mango/peach with a little more pronounced flavor of toffee/brown sugar malt profile than the nose suggests. After 3 months: to a slightly milder 9. Flavors became much more rich and blended, pronounced creaminess that smoothed out the flavor ride of lightning.
Finishes...Went from an aerial guitar solo of wet and Bitter hops to a mellower rock ballad. Still fantastic!
4.5 Teetering on the edge of a 5!
Rye DIPA vs. DIPA... I say Jungle Room edges Bitch'n Camaro! I am a hop head and I love my hops! The big difference between the Rye DIPA vs. DIPA is the rye cutting that bitter hop flavor that I love in the body/finish. The rye adds a great spiciness to the body which is nice, but not really what I am looking for.
3 months till tapping your favorite brew's growler...All in all, not that bad. I expected the ABV to carry it over, but as with cellaring hoppy beers you start to loose the hop nose/flavor. The reward for Jungle Room's growler "aging" was a more creamy mellowness that was still a huge hit with me. I may have to try this little experiment with a porter/stout. I have a feeling they will hold up better.
One-Upsmanship... I think I got Uncle Billy this year! He was all about the Jungle Room! He had a growler of PDG from Bier Brewery and a few bombers of John John Dead Guy Ale from Rogue that he and his wife were willing to share. The JJDGA did not come close to the flavor trip that is Jungle Room. He may have had a sporting chance if he had shown up with DFG from Bier Brewery (their version of DIPA). Ah well... there is always next year!
MOKBPresents.com and in the Tasting Room!
The Big Guy: For me it was no contest- Bitchin Camaro was the standout. I liked Jungle Room, it's a great beer, but at the end of the day its a DIPA with a little extra Grapefruit flavor. I didn't find it super outside of the box. I have been doing a lot of trading lately and the Jungle Room totally stands up to some of the best DIPA's out there (Simtra, Green Flash, etc) but for me there wasn't enough that was special about it.
Bitchin' Camaro on the other hand was one of the better, more IPA-like, RyePAs I have ever had. I loved Rye da Tiger by Three Floyds and I would put this on about the same level. The rye was a very nice malty backbone to a strong hop forward flavor. Everything blended well without overwhelming or overshadowing any of the other flavors. At the end of the day though, they were both good beers. It was about as close as it can get.
Jungle Room Gets a 4
Bitchin' Camara Gets a slightly larger 4