August 4th was IPA Day. Being a fan of IPA’s, well, how could I not take part. So off I went to National on 17th to participate in the festivities. What follows are my thoughts on the 12 IPA’s I sampled.

IPA Day Flight 1
Flight 1
IPA Day Flight 1 Scores
Flight 1 Ranking

Flight 1 notes (in the order I posted them to untappd) …

  • Pineapple Sculpin – holy crap that was good! The hops certainly took care of the sweetness from the pineapple. I didn’t expect to like it this much.
  • Longhammer IPA – uh, I earned a badge but don’t remember what I said, so, no comment.
  • Snow White IPA – wheat is for bread, not for beer. That said, this was actually pretty damn good.
  • Phil Paul – really wanted to like this one as it’s brewed locally, but …
  • Cold Brew IPA – Loved the coffee taste. This one was really complex, and the longer it lingered on my tongue the more I liked it. I couldn’t drink more than one, though.
  • Hopilano IPA – seriously friggin’ good IPA. Nothing else to say.
IPA Day Flight 2
Flight 2
IPA Day Flight 2 Scores
Flight 2 Ranking

As with Flight 1, notes …

  • Fresh Squeezed IPA – fruity, but not like Snapple or something sickening. I’d drink this again.
  • Scout Rye IPA – Okay, if you haven’t tried Rye IPA’s do yourself a favour and try one (or three). They are really, really good and this one is no exception.
  • Easy Way IPA – nope, nope, nope. This one was like a terrible pilsner that someone chucked a small handful of hops into. Even though it was a 5oz pour I still couldn’t finish it. Should call it No Way IPA. Odd because I’ve had other IPA’s from Ninkasi that were really terrific. I think it’s the session thing – Canadian brewers just seem to make session IPA’s with more flavour and character.
  • Hopulent IPA – reminded me of a Hobgoblin with extra hops. Should call it Hopgoblin. 🙂
  • Summit Seeker – departed too far from the classic IPA, IMO.
  • IPA #3 Tokyo Drift – looks like grapefruit juice, tastes like an awesome IPA. I’d drink this again. And again and again and again.

My top three, in alphabetical order:

  1. Hopilano IPA – Bridge Brewing, North Vancouver, BC
  2. IPA #3 Tokyo Drift – Last Best Brewing & Distilling, Calgary, AB
  3. Pineapple Sculpin IPA – Ballast Point Brewing, San Diego, CA

Any (most?) of the Alberta and British Columbia brewers can be found on this page. For Last Best, use the link for Bearhill Brewing (parent company).