Society & Solitude 4 from Hill Farmstead Brewery in Greensboro Bend, Vermont. From the website:
Our experimental Double IPA experience continues. Hybrid Imperial IPA… Think Double Citra Meets Double Galaxy. 8% abv
Let’s face it, IPAs almost always look sexy. This beer is no exception. It’s a hazy orange juice color and sits under a rather large slightly off-white head. It had beautiful lacing throughout the (too short) drinking session. This is the kind of beer that would make even the most prude chap get all hot and bothered.
This beer filled the room with hoppy goodness when I opened the flip top. Tons of Citra yumminess, which brings tropical fruits like pineapple, grapefruit, and mango. The Galaxy brings passion fruit and more citrus. There is a bit of a grape-like aroma as well. For being 8%, there’s no alcohol to be found on the nose. This. Beer. Smells. Great.
This is bonkers. It seriously tastes like a blend of freshly squeezed grapefruit and orange juice. I almost expect a little pulp while drinking this. There is a very good amount of tropical fruit character, like mango, a lot of pineapple, blood orange, etc. It’s not as bitter as other IPAs I’ve had. Usually, when an IPA isn’t bitter I get disappointed, but in this beer I don’t miss it at all. It actually tastes less bitter than grapefruit juice while leaving all of the wonderful sweet fruit flavor. No alcohol to be found in this fella. The only negative thing I have to say about this beer is that there is the absolute SLIGHTEST dank/grassy flavor, but that’s only because I drank my Haterade earlier. Overall, the Citra and Galaxy are playing together so wonderfully in this beer you’d think they were soul mates.
Slightly under carbonated, which I can probably attribute to the 830+ mile trip that this beer had to undergo in the growler. That being said, this beer still has a wonderful mouthfeel. There’s just enough residual sugar to keep this beer from going down exactly like water but is by NO means a struggle to drink. The body is medium-light, which is just about perfect for an IPA. There is a tiny bit of hop resin that lingers after the swallow, and it feels more like a grapefruit pith. Yum!
Hill Farmstead has been gaining a ton of respect lately, and beers like this are the reason for it. This is stupidly delicious and a triumph of brewing. I don’t want to sit here and fan the flames of all the Hill Farmstead hype, but in my experience they totally deserve it. For me, the amazing thing about this beer is that it has the one thing that I don’t like about Imperial IPAs – it’s sweet, not bitter. I generally don’t like IPAs unless they are tongue-splitting bitter. But this beer makes a fool out of me, and proves that you don’t need an IPA that destroys your taste buds to be amazing. Whatever they are doing at Hill Farmstead they’re doing right.