So a few weeks ago I mentioned that when Belgo IPA came out I would do a tasting and tell you all about it. Well it's out and I tasted it and now I am going to tell you all about it.
I poured this beer off the tap, a big globe glass. The head was bright, like super bright white, just beautiful. I managed to pack about 2.5 fingers of foam into the tapering top of that glass and it wanted to hang around. It was a few minutes between the pour and the first sip because of the photo opportunity (and the slowness of my camera phone) but the head was hanging tough. A small amount of dissipation but overall the head retention was superb. The color of the beer itself is the next wonderment, just dazzlingly bright and almost slick looking. The amber is amplified by swirlyness of the hoppy beer sheen, it is almost as if I am staring at the sun when I look at Belgo, but it doesn't make my head hurt.
Then I took a couple long and luxurious sniffs at that glorious head and came away excited. The sweet, fruity esters of a Belgian beer were dancing a slow jam with the punchy citrus personality of the IPA level hops... It was as if Belgo had two sides (like Two-Faced (the best Batman villain ever)).
Then I went in for the first sip. and the fruity tones of the yeast started the whole thing out. It was all Belgian all the time: banana, plum, spicy clove, and bubble gum jumping out all at once. Then as these flavors started to fade the citrus world of the Amarillo, Centennial and Cascade hops came blasting though with dominance, wiping out all the previous hints of the yeast. The finish was crisp, dry and enlightening. My mouth was watering and my tongue was calling out for more.
As I finished the glass of beer the lacing was great and the carbonation stayed. Overall a really nice beer (like an A (9.5 out of 10)), pretty well perfect.
Now I have to admit my bias here, I am a New Belgium employee and I get paid by NBB to write this blog and on top of all that the Belgo IPA I was drinking was free. All of these things add up to a positive review. But I like to think that even if those things weren't true I would have said the very same about this beer. It is an amazing brew and a wonderful addition to this emerging style.
You should head out into this great world and find yourself some Belgo IPA. Or if you don't live in one of our distribution areas try find something else in this style, maybe a Piraat or Green Flash Le Freak or maybe go to beeradvocate.com's style guide on Belgian IPA's and see what you can matchup with, you will not be disappointed.
This is a great beer style and Belgo IPA is a great example, get thirsty and take a sip.