IPAs, or India Pale Ales, have enjoyed a huge surge in popularity over the past couple of years. Lately, however, a new sub-style has spawned and enjoyed immense popularity — enter, the New England IPA.
Named after a style that originated from the six northeastern USA states of New England, NEIPAs have a cloudy appearance and low carbonation, and feature jammy, juicy flavours of apricot, peach and pineapple alongside the heavy citrusy notes that IPA fans crave. More delicate flavours of hops are embraced here, too, rather than the piney, resiny bitterness favoured by their clear-bodied cousins.
The beers characteristically pour a murky, mango colour reminiscent of cloudy fruit juice, and feature similar flavours in a beer context.
Here follows this beer snob's top picks of the trending NEIPAs, that'll get your head into the clouds as the last warmth of autumn begins to fade.
Jedi Juice is Hop Nation's brilliantly titled take on a beer it brewed for GABS (the Great Australian Beer Spectapular). It was originally a specialty brew, but enjoyed such popularity it was reignited as part of the Footscray brewery's core range. Jedi Juice features a gentle citrus aroma and the palate reveals juicy notes of passionfruit, pineapple, nectarine and grapefruit, with a smooth carbonation and a tangy kiss of bitter hops that punch through at the end.
At 7.1 percent ABV, and with a white can packaging featuring a tattoo-sportin', blaster-totin' Princess Leia, the force is certainly strong with this one. Best consumed as fresh as possible.
Hop Nation Jedi Juice, 375ml can, $7.50 each (available from various stockists across the country)
Sauce Brewing Co Bubble and Squeak, 500ml can, $10 each or $35 for four This beer is typically hazy, smooth and creamy with big citrus and tropical fruit notes (think mango and passionfruit) and a low bitterness. Rounding out at 6.5 percent ABV, it's a supremely well-balanced beer that offers new dynamics with each sip.
Feral Brewing Co Biggie Juice, 330ml bottle, $7 each or $23 for four (available from various stockists across the country) This beer represents the popularity of NEIPAs in the mainstream beer scene. Under Amatil ownership, Feral is still brewing its Biggie Juice East Coast IPA. Sitting at six percent ABV, Biggie offers a rich bouquet of floral and tropical fruit aromas that follow through with a juicy punch onto the palate. The finish is smooth, with just a hint of bitterness, and a smooth carbonation that makes for an incredibly moreish drop.
Hop Topics is our new bi-weekly beer column keeping you up-to-date with the latest beer trends happening around the country.
Dominic Gruenewald is a Sydney based actor, writer and self-proclaimed beer snob. Between gigs, he has pulled pints at all the right venues and currently hosts Sydney's longest running beer appreciation society Alestars at the Taphouse, Darlinghurst.