Location: Woodinville, WA - Portsmouth, NH - Portland, OR. Take your pick I guess?
Name: Long Hammer IPA
Ok, they got me. I bought this because of the bottle. I had had plenty of Long Hammer in the past but it was in an old, generic beer bottle. This, this was something new and bold! Plus, it was either this or PBR. And trust, faithful Brewbies (yep, that just happened. You got named.) an exhaustive critique of PBR is forthcoming. First warning sign: I noticed when I poured this was it didn't quite seem the color of a super solid IPA. The color screamed a golden straw color which produced a foamy white head. Quickly, the head sunk into a thin white halo which did little to lace the glass. Tons of carbonation made me think of a hyperactive lava lamp with tiny bubbles instead of long globs of gunk. It at least looks refreshing. Second warning sign: The nose is kind of like an IPA. There are some notes of hops, a noticeable amount of biscuit notes, and a "now you smell me, now you don't" dose of malt. I, being the (h)optomist that I am, gave the little IPA that could the benefit of the doubt and dove headlong into a mouthful of suds. Warning sign the third: The components of an IPA are there, much like the nose, but came up lacking. It's almost as if this IPA was created to gently introduce someone to hops. As if to say "Hey, you. I'm quiet and unassuming and you've heard of hops before, right?" Bready flavors dominate the pallet, so much so that it almost overpowers the hint of hops. After the wash comes the bitterness. It's unwarranted. I didn't even earn this bitter aftertaste! The lingering bitterness makes me long for something of a fuller body and more complex flavor profile. This is just ale that might have had a few more hop pellets added during the boil. The sad thing is that the label clearly states the fandom of dry hopping... For shame, Red Hook. Overall, Long Hammer is not fantastic. Take the training wheels off and hit something harder with more bite and more flavor like Stone Ruination, Victory Hop Devil, or Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA,As it warmed up it actually decreased in quality. If you're going to drink it, drink it fast.
|More like a red herring.|