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magic-hat-encore-craft beer

Style – American Wheat “I.P.A.”

ABV – 6.0%

Appearance – This brew poured hazy copper with an orange tint, topped by a dense, off-white head that lingered as long as an IPA should. A delicate lace decorated the glass on the way down.

Aroma – I almost couldn’t believe my nose. Hops are prevalent, loaded with a deep citrus aroma. Hints of mint, honey and summer grass are there as well. I kept going back to inhale more deeply, enjoying layer after layer of unique and indescribable scents.

Taste – On the first sip it’s a menagerie of flavors with almost everything I could smell affecting the flavor. The sweet earthiness of the wheat was there, with a depth of hop flavoring that wasn’t overbearing in bitterness, but didn’t fail to pack a hoppy punch. It seemed like with every sip I discovered something new. Hints of honey, edible flowers and essential citrus oils danced around my palette as well. It was as if my tongue had been transported to a wheat field full of honey bees, dotted with tangerine trees and hop vines. (Take that, Beatles.)

Overall – The balance of this beer amazed me. Many times attempts at crafting a wholly new version of an IPA end up with nothing but hop bitterness. Go into this beer with a fresh palette and an open mind, use your nose and every part of your tongue; you will not be disappointed. I’m often impressed by what America’s new craft brewers can accomplish, but I am rarely amazed. “Wheat in an IPA? Come on, man” was my original thought… Magic Hat knocked that thought out of my head and knocked this one out of the park. I can’t wait for my next one. I wish they sold it in 12 packs!

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