Welcome back to another edition of Craft Beer Friday. The beer this week is from one of my all-time favorite breweries, Sierra Nevada, out of Choco, California. Other than their summer offering (I dislike almost all summer beers anyway), this is an outstanding brewery with a great heritage and the unique ability to constantly crank out great beer.
The selection this week is Sierra Nevada's Flipside Red IPA. You might be wondering how a red IPA differs from a regular IPA, and I will tell you. A red IPA is a normal American red ale, brewed with a stronger alcohol content, then hopped up like a pale ale, or in this case, an IPA. And Sierra Nevada does it quite well.
Right away you get the bitterness of the hops and the dry mouth-feel, followed by the malty richness of the red ale. This was purchased in a 12-pack and quaffed from a pint glass. It is a beautiful beer.
Flipside pours a crisp copper red, with a hearty head that retains and leaves some lacing on the glass. Because of the color of the beer, you immediatley think of a malty, bready richness, typical of American red ales. But this is no 5% ABV beer. Flipside is 6.2% ABV and has a depth of flavor unique to the style. The maltiness is like a shadow for the powerful hop notes--in the background, yet always there.
The bitter, grapefruity smell is slightly cut by the sweetness of the malts. This is a very drinkable beer that could forge the way for other brewers to start making red IPAs (at least I hope so).
Another great beer for a Craft Beer Friday. Go and grab yourself a 6 or 12 pack, or even a case of Sierra Nevada's Flipside. You won't be disappointed. If you are, send me the unused portion.
I will see that it is disposed of properly--one bottle at a time.