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Style American India Pale Ale · ABV 6.7% · 710 ml bottle
Brewed by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co · Chico · California · United States
Read more www.sierranevada.com

Bianually Sierra Nevada treats us to a hop feast out of the ordinary. Once during fall when ridiculously fresh hops are transported from Washinhgton State to the brewery in California, later on becoming the Northern Hemisphere Fresh Hop Ale. The other during spring, when freshly harvested Pacific Hallertau, New Zealand Motueka and New Zealand Southern Cross hops are rapidly flown from New Zealand to the US, then brewed and labeled as Southern Hemisphere Fresh Hop Ale.

Luckily enough I was able to salvage a bomber of the later on a search mission to the bottle shop (read Systembolaget) in September.

Appearance 2/3

One and half finger of light khaki colored head resting on a semi-transparent body of orange to amber ale. Pretty good retention and short distinct curtains around the circumference of the glass.

Aroma 9/12

Prominent hop nose with a citric, grapefruity and fir needle profile. The malt base is a caramel (fudge and vanilla as it warms up) sweetness. The hops eventually turn towards a dryer note that are almost dusty and woody. Other fruits include orange, peach and apricots. None of the flavors overtake the other, hence a very harmonious nose.

Flavor 17/20

Citric, grapefruity and fir needle profile as well as orange, peach and apricots. Bitter midway through, lingers /stays for quite some time. Has a llight ashy dryness reminiscent of Ska Brewing’s Modus Hoperandi that assists in keeping the taste of the beer vivid and alive longer. The flavors really correspond well with the aroma in this IPA, something I’m honestly appreciative of.

Mouthfeel 4/5

Category-winning carbonation, sweet and smooth liqiud, clean and crisp finish, carries the flavors like a mother holding its child.

Overall impression 8/10

A straight up, no tricks – no flaws crafted brew from world class brewery Sierra Nevada. It shouldn’t come as a surprise anymore but the quality of the products coming from Ken Grossman and his crew in Chico is awesomely high. I mean, even the year around-offerings like the pale ale and extra ipa are classy beers. With this is mind, the Southern Hemisphere is bringing their game to a new level.

I do appreciate the balanced hops and malts but what I want to stress as the most important mark of this beer is the crisp and clean dry finish.

This was a limited release at Systembolaget so keep your eyes wide open for the next opportunity to lay your hands a bomber or more.

Total Score 40/50

Excellent – Exemplifies style well, requires minor fine-tuning.

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