Thursday, March 29, 2012

Alaskan Black IPA (Alaskan Brewing, Juneau, AK)

Alaskan Black IPA @ Hopkins Tavern
For my stop at the Hopkins Tavern, the Alaskan Black IPA was the best surprise of the stop.

The bartender poured the draft a bit hard, so the head was a frothy dark tan.  Mouthfeel on first sip is somewhere between creamy and silky--full bodied and satisfying.  Good lace on the glass, so a nice serving job by the tavern.  Clean roasted malt in the nose, but not burnt or acrid--like standing back a bit from a hardwood campfire.  Earthy and floral hop in the nose--some grapefruit in the background.   Roast is just as pleasant in the taste and there's a very respectable hop bite with a slight fruity tint (from hop?).  Dry finish leaves me wanting more.  Excellent Black IPA that I need to do again, but haven't in the intervening two months it took for me to post the write up.

Took me a while to find the description on the Alaskan website under spring release (that I drank in January).  Alaskan emphasizes the high hops and citrus, though my draft was understated compared to the touting.  However, my experience was significantly better than the reviews on BeerAdvocate.  While there are those who reflect my high praise, we are in the minority.  Maybe I need to try it again to confirm or deny my first draft.  At any rate, the draft above was well loved and enjoyed right after the picture.


  1. It's a spring release? My OG/Capital rep has been pushing it all winter long.

  2. So says the website. Not surprisingly, the winter seasonal was Alaskan Winter Ale. Missed that one, but maybe I needed to be looking for it last August or so! :) Seasonal creep is getting worse.