While many young Americans were catching Ubers to overpriced bars and clubs on NYE, my friends and I decided to stay in and grill steaks, play poker, and make some Kentucky Mules. Say what you will, but it was probably the best NYE in recent memory.
I have been wanting to do some sort of blind taste test for a while now and earlier in the week I noticed I had 3 Double IPAs in the fridge and I thought “THIS SHALL BE MY NEXT BLOG!” So I rallied the troops and we all sat down for some good old blind taste testin’.
My methodology was straightforward. Each person was given a sampler of beer, told to write their thoughts down, and give each one a rating between 1-10 (10 being the best).
Editor’s Note: None of us claim to be beer or IPA experts in any way, we’re just huge fans of local craft beer. Also we may have had a few drinks prior to these tastings.
Ruination Double IPA (8.5% ABV)
Stone – San Diego, CA
Dina: “I like this beer because it’s crisp and I noticed a very “citrus hop” [flavor] to it. Definitely a double. A little too malty on top. I give it an 8.4 though“
Emily: “I like that there wasn’t a strong aftertaste. I feel like with some IPAs, if you like drink it, like, the taste is in your mouth. But when you swallowed this, like, that was it. I like this one. I gave it an 8”
Braden: “It had a strong aroma. You could smell it. Umm. FRUITY. I wrote pine. It did kinda have a pine taste. I also just ate a spicy cheese and I feel like that’s affecting my pallet. I didn’t love it I gave it a 6.”
Joey: “I gave it a 7.5. I didn’t love it as much as you guys did. I thought it had kind of an alcoholic aftertaste, you can kinda taste the scent of alcohol? Some breweries try to make their double IPAs, like, super alcoholic – I’m not sure what that one is [ABV-wise] but I’m sure it’s probably like up there in the 9-11% range. ”
Pliny The Elder (8% ABV)
Russian River – Santa Rosa, CA
Dina: “This one’s definitely not as clean/crisp but much more enjoyable throughout. Like, it has a beautiful lasting finish on it. I like actually, from a drinkability perspective, that it’s not too bitey. So like, compared to the first one, it was very crisp and hit your pallet immediately and was a lil bitey – this one I could see myself drinking throughout the night. Overall much more enjoyable. I give it a 9.7.”
Emily: “There’s definitely more aftertaste with this one. I think that in recent times, I’ve moved away from the IPA a little bit because of like just how so overpowering it is. Like, you can’t drink it with food. Cause it’s just like, so much, I feel like. So. It’s very heavy. You have an IPA and it’s like a commitment. Whereas like a lighter beer, you can sip that easier through a meal. I’m at a place in my life where I like cleaner, crisper beers. I give this one a 7.”
Braden: “First impression: it was smooth, yet still sharp. Maybe a more sharp aftertaste. Umm. It had minimal flavor probably in comparison to Beer #1. And there wasn’t the fruits. I did write malty. But this was definitely more malty than the first one. I gave it a 8.
Joey: “Right off the bat, I thought this one was super dank. Very piney aroma and flavor. I also thought it was much more bitter (in a good way) than Beer #1. I gave it an 9.1. I really liked this one.”
Racer X Double IPA (8.3% ABV)
Bear Republic – Healdsburg, CA
Dina: “Oh gawd. Blehh. I definitely noticed more amber color right off the bat with this one. It was very foamy and dense and cloudy. Umm. My initial on the pallet was honey and apple, and that intrigued me, but it does NOT grab your attention whatsoever. It does not have any kind of crisp hop. It kinda actually tastes like rotten apple cider. I thought it was blah blah and I give it a 6.3.”
Emily: “I said aftertaste = no. It’s like very aggressive. And not in a good way. I gave it a 5.
Dina: “It made me burp like a dude. Joey is this a joke one. Is this a joke beer?
Braden: “So this is a ‘whack in the face’ of flavor. Almost offensive. Yeah. AND! What was surprising too is I really thought it tasted like a stout – but not immediately. It kinda took a second. So I wrote stout aftertaste. Which was surprising to me. I gave it a 4. I did not enjoy it.”
Joey: “So I thought this beer was, like again, alcoholic. Like I can just taste the alcohol. You’re supposed to like sip into a beer and have it take effect you don’t wanna like taste vodka (Emily: Unless you’re my mom). I thought it was hoppy but all the flavors did not do it for me. It was very like, too bitter. Like not enjoyable. I didn’t not care for it as much either -you guys we’re right on the money with this one. I gave it a 6.7.”
Beer #1 (Ruination): 7.5/10
Beer #2 (Pliny the Elder): 8.5/10
Beer #3 (Racer X): 5.5/10
What do you know, Pliny came out on top. What’s your favorite Double IPA? Follow me and let me know on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram! You can also tag me using #TheDayDrinker. Don’t forget to check out my previous beer blog posts below!