Tuesday, May 17, 2011

IPA round-up No. 1 – Founders Centennial IPA review

All hail the king of FatCat's IPA shootout.  The Founders came, it saw, and it dominated!


ABV:  7.2%
IBU:   65

Founders has a tremendous reputation when it comes to the stellar stouts they offer.  But the question was, could the IPA measure up to the likes of Two Hearted or Odell?  The answer was a definitive YES!  In 2010, Ratebeer.com ranked Founders the 4th best brewery in the world.  Founders also has several beers listed in the top one hundred beers on Beeradvocate.com. They were winners of four medals at the 2010 World Beer Cup, and the winner of two medals at the 2010 Great American Beer Festival.  Founders is one serious craft brewery.

The Centennial IPA poured with a small white head that dissipated quickly.  The nose yields gentle hop aroma with slight hints of caramel in the background.  The taste of this brew is balanced perfectly with hop flavor and caramel.  Yes this brew has malt character with caramel notes, but it was not overpowering as was the case for some other beers in the shootout.  The caramel notes create perfect harmony with the beautiful hop flavor in this brew.  The brew finishes clean and leaves you hunting for more.  Luckily there's five more where that came from.  This brew is a pure joy to drink.

While doing research I found this brew has something in common with the Bell's Two Hearted Ale.  What's that you might ask?  It is also brewed exclusively with the Centennial hop.  This is the reason I love craft brew.  Here are two beers brewed with the same type of hop and are completely different.  The Two Hearted is a refreshing citrus brew and the Founders is a more complex caramel brew of pure deliciousness.

Man that is one super freakin' sweet ass delicious hop!


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