Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Saint Arnold Divine Reserve 11
Today is the day that Texas beer lovers go insane, its Divine Reserve day. A day that twitter goes crazy with #dr11 hash tags with people informing the world where they could score some of this beer. Its the day that Saint Arnold's releases there inconsistently scheduled special brew. Each DR a different recipe, some based on winning recipes from home brew contests, others like DR11 are done in house. The Divine Reserve release today is a Double (or Imperial) IPA (DR3 also was a DIPA, but this is a different recipe). For those looking for DR you may have more luck then previous releases: production for DR 10 was 1800 cases, for DR 11 it's 4100 cases, so more than double. Also various places around the state will be tapping kegs and/or casks. In Houston I know Petrol Station, Anvil, Flying Saucer, and Stag's Head are tapping tonight. Down in my neck of the woods in Clear Lake, Boondoggles will be tapping a keg tomorrow. Like all DR's this one is higher in ABV weighing at 9% and with a lab tested 76 IBU. Believe it or not the lab tested is an important note. Many breweries that state 100 IBU's or more are basing that off of calculations and not an actual lab test (its more expensive). Lab tests have shown calculated IBU's to be significantly off (there really are a lot less 100+ IBU beers than you think). As it should be hops are the show case here and this DIPA is brewed with Columbus, Simcoe and Centennial hops. The Beer: This one pours an orange-y copper color with a thick white head. Before I even poured it in the glass you could start to get notes of hops. Its massive, tons of grapefruit, just massively hoppy on the nose. The first sip is an explosion of citrus pith, grapefruit rind, tongue coating, sticky hops. Its brightly hoppy, lots of citrus, but underneath, just kinda hiding out there, is some carmel-y notes, that add just touch of sweetness. Its this touch that makes me think the brew will age some what well. Most DIPA's are made to drink fresh and this should be no exception, however, as the hops fade, I think (and yes I could be way off) there is enough malt in the back ground that it will come forward with time and create a sweeter more concentrated beer. Now off of the tangent and back to the now, this is a great DIPA, to me its not Avery Maharaja, but its very damn good. It gets an A from me.