Quantcast

Good introduction IPA?

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
The first IPA I ever had was about 2 years ago, and I despised it. I think perhaps it was because I didn't appreciate it. I'd like to "break into them." As I understand it, you can develop your palate to be able to enjoy things you initially don't like.

So my question is the following: does anyone know of an IPA that would be a good introduction for me, without being far too bitter (as this would probably turn me off of them even more)? Something somewhat popular so that I could find it, or maybe something local (I'm in Nassau County, NY - I know Blue Point has "Hoptical Illusion"). Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 

sandyeggoxj

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2011
Messages
3,178
Reaction score
537
Location
Sunshine and Big Holes
New Belgium Ranger IPA? You could also try some of these trendy "Session IPA" beers that are floating around. They will have a lower overall bitterness to balance the low ABV. A lot of them are hop bursted so you get great hop flavor and aroma but have a lower bitterness.

You could also try more west coast pale ales as they will be a step down from a true ipa, but still hoppy.

It might be impossible to get out there, but a month or two ago I had a Palate Wrecker from Green Flash. It was exactly like easting a hop cone. Incredibly crisp and clean hop character that was so delightful.

It is good that you want to like IPAs. They say there are two kinds of beer drinkers, those who like IPA and those who are wrong. :D
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
New Belgium Ranger IPA? You could also try some of these trendy "Session IPA" beers that are floating around. They will have a lower overall bitterness to balance the low ABV. A lot of them are hop bursted so you get great hop flavor and aroma but have a lower bitterness.

You could also try more west coast pale ales as they will be a step down from a true ipa, but still hoppy.

It might be impossible to get out there, but a month or two ago I had a Palate Wrecker from Green Flash. It was exactly like easting a hop cone. Incredibly crisp and clean hop character that was so delightful.

It is good that you want to like IPAs. They say there are two kinds of beer drinkers, those who like IPA and those who are wrong. :D
Hey thanks a lot for the quick response. Yea, the people with whom I drink adore IPAs and always wonder how I can love beer and hate IPA...I'm past due to start drinking them.

Thanks a lot for the suggestions. I've heard of Palate Wrecker before, and have heard good things. I'm gonna pick something up for tonight so I'll look for that and the Belgium Ranger. Thanks again!
 

Yooper

Ale's What Cures You!
Staff member
Admin
Mod
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
74,604
Reaction score
12,197
Location
UP/Snowbird in Florida
Bell's 2 Hearted, Founder's Centennial IPA, Schlafly A IPA to name a few.
I was going to suggest Bell's Two Hearted myself. It's an all centennial beer, but it's got some caramel malt sweetness to it, so while it's bitter it's also balanced with hops aroma and flavor with the caramel malt.

I find Ranger very harsh, and wouldn't recommend it.

Sam Adams has one that I sort of like, and I thought I wouldn't. I think it's a "white IPA" and that may be a lower IBU introduction to IPAs.
 

sandyeggoxj

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2011
Messages
3,178
Reaction score
537
Location
Sunshine and Big Holes
I find ranger to be sweet and light on the hops. I had a fresh bottle too. I guess my tastebuds are TOO ipa centric...

That is the issue with these types of questions. Palates are so different.

I really like my IPAs to be clean and dry to really highlight the hop and focus less on the malt. I guess it is a west coast thing.
 

HomebrewCraig

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
238
Reaction score
45
Location
McHenry
Lagunitas Sucks, Sierra Nevada IPA, Fresh Squeezed IPA by Deschutes... Three good examples that will not make you pucker up, and if you don't care for them, you're out only about $10 per six pack.
 

sandyeggoxj

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2011
Messages
3,178
Reaction score
537
Location
Sunshine and Big Holes
Hey thanks a lot for the quick response. Yea, the people with whom I drink adore IPAs and always wonder how I can love beer and hate IPA...I'm past due to start drinking them.

Thanks a lot for the suggestions. I've heard of Palate Wrecker before, and have heard good things. I'm gonna pick something up for tonight so I'll look for that and the Belgium Ranger. Thanks again!
Do you drink what they drink? Or at least taste it? How bad do you want to like IPA?
 

Conestoga

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2013
Messages
84
Reaction score
28
Location
Quakertown
Bell's 2 Hearted, Founder's Centennial IPA, Schlafly A IPA to name a few.
This post nailed it, IMO. Lagunitas IPA is also a pretty good addition to this list.

Peeper, MO and Zoe(Amber) from Maine Beer Co are Pale Ale's, but they are hoppy enough to be considered a gateway to IPA.
 

Phil_Ozzy_Fer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
64
Reaction score
3
Location
Montreal
I would suggest trying Greene King IPA. (It's a British beer) It's maybe not the best beer, (my opinion) but it's a good representation of the style. Otherwise, maybe try Goose Island IPA. (From the USA). It's also a fairly solid example of an IPA. Since the style guidelines allow for a range of ingredients to be used, and it's a popular style, there is considerable variety to choose from. Everyone's palate is a bit different, and so I would suggest, that aside from the two I mentioned, you try a few different ones. There's some great suggestions other people replied with as well. If you live near a liquor store that has a range to choose from, maybe you could sort of build your own 6-pack and see what you prefer.
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
Haha I'm beginning to see the problem with this question. Thanks for all of the suggestions. I know everyone has a different palate, so let me clarify as best I can:

I generally enjoy the taste of hops. I typically taste the pellets when I'm brewing, but they always seem much more bitter when in the beer. I want to develop my palate so that I can not only enjoy IPA and hoppiness but also to experience different levels and types of hops and be able to differentiate between them when I taste beer.

For these reasons, I want to get into IPA. I sometimes drink what friends are drinking, but they enjoy really high IBU, and I typically taste them but don't enjoy them. Hence why I'm looking to "build up to that" I guess. I usually drink porters and stouts, or a dark ale for a session beer. We're all usually drinking different things actually. I guess that's a little weird? Haha never really thought twice about it.
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
I would suggest trying Greene King IPA. (It's a British beer) It's maybe not the best beer, (my opinion) but it's a good representation of the style. Otherwise, maybe try Goose Island IPA. (From the USA). It's also a fairly solid example of an IPA. Since the style guidelines allow for a range of ingredients to be used, and it's a popular style, there is considerable variety to choose from. Everyone's palate is a bit different, and so I would suggest, that aside from the two I mentioned, you try a few different ones. There's some great suggestions other people replied with as well. If you live near a liquor store that has a range to choose from, maybe you could sort of build your own 6-pack and see what you prefer.
Sorry for double post...this one was while I was responding.

I've seen Goose Island! I at least know that one is around. I was planning on making a custom 6-pack, so all of these suggestions are definitely not going to waste! :D
 

Conestoga

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2013
Messages
84
Reaction score
28
Location
Quakertown
It might be a bit soon for you to try this beer, but it's local to you. Ithaca's Flower Power is pretty fantastic if you can get it fresh.

Sixpoint Bengali Tiger is also fairly mild and hoppy.
 

sandyeggoxj

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2011
Messages
3,178
Reaction score
537
Location
Sunshine and Big Holes
With mix-and-match sixers I like to try all kinds of things. Even if I hate the style I will usually try it. Worst case I like it and best case I'm out up to $3.
 

dobe12

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
903
Reaction score
216
Location
Jersey
How about starting with Pale Ales? Then as your tastes grow, trying some different IPAs. But if you definitely are trying to force yourself to like an IPA, I'd try Founders All Day IPA. It's low ABV and not extremely bitter. Harpoon's IPA is another I feel is on the tamer side. Other IPAs with a maltier backbone would be good too. Founders Red Rye IPA comes to mind. Lagunitas' IPA is solid. It is a bit bitter but has some fantastic flavor from the finishing hops. I liked IPAs before I had Lagunitas... theirs is what really turned the light on for me though.
 

dobe12

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
903
Reaction score
216
Location
Jersey
With mix-and-match sixers I like to try all kinds of things. Even if I hate the style I will usually try it. Worst case I like it and best case I'm out up to $3.
Great point! I don't buy beer often, but when I do it's usually mixed 6'ers of different beers I either love or have never had. I generally get 3-4 IPAs or APAs in a 6pack. Either that or I'm buying bombers of Firestone Walker. I can't get enough of their beers.
 

captwalt

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2011
Messages
289
Reaction score
55
Location
wheaton
I once didn't like IPA's. I tried them and just couldn't get in to it. That was until I was at a local spot and they had brewery reps showing off their beers and they brought with them a fresh keg of an IPA. I tried it and loved it. I think the key is to drink an ipa as fresh as possible. The big brewers have good reputations but you can't always get them as fresh as you may want them. I recommend going to a god local brewery and try what they have. it is likely to be relatively fresh and you may see what I'm talking about. Or you may decide I'm full of beans.
 

brewerelated

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
154
Reaction score
61
Location
Los Angeles County
I would have to agree with some of the earlier post and recommend Lagunitas. At the local Riteaid store near my house they sometimes sell a 12 pack for $12.99.

It's a good all around IPA for a reasonable price and I think its approachable because a lot of other non IPA drinkers that I offered it to also thought it was pretty good.

I was on the fence with IPA until I tried Lagunitas and that is the one that transitioned me into hoppier and hoppier beers. Dogfish Head 90 is another of the early ones that I tried that got me interested in IPAs. Now I love IPA's and wished I had discovered them sooner.
 

solbes

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2011
Messages
2,981
Reaction score
241
Location
Ramsey & Akeley
Bells 2 Hearted for sure. I was kind of the same way until I had a sixer of 2H.

Liked Pale Ales but at the time felt most IPA's were over the top. While I still prefer malty beers over hoppy beers, I now enjoy drinking all sorts of IPA's/DIPA's. And 1/3 of my home brews are of the hoppy variety.
 

mrdauber64

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2011
Messages
447
Reaction score
93
Location
Oak Grove, MN
How about starting with Pale Ales?
This. I learned to appreciate IPA's by drinking pale ales. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was my first "Hoppy Beer" that showed me that not all hoppy beers have to be super bitter. If you can get Widmer's Drifter Pale Ale or Tallgrass 8-Bit that would be a good place to start along with Sierra Nevada. All three are excellent and are nice and hoppy but not over the top.
 

snwbrd40oz

Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
Location
Denver
I usually drink porters and stouts, or a dark ale for a session beer. We're all usually drinking different things actually. I guess that's a little weird? Haha never really thought twice about it.
If you can find one why don't you try a black IPA? I found out about them at a local brewery (Tommyknockers for any other CO peeps) and fell in love! Since then I've been seeing more and more of them pop up so I guess the style is becoming more accepted. YOu'll typically get a little more malt profile to provide more balance to the hops
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
Maybe I should start with Pale Ales or Black IPA. Black sounds like it's more for me because I enjoy stouts that have a high IBU but also a nice malt flavor and sweetness to mask it a little.

And as far as local goes, Blue Point is only about 20 minutes from my house, and I think they always have Hoptical Illusion on tap, so maybe that would be a good start to hoppy beers.

All very good suggestions. Thanks! I'll look around tonight and see what I can find. Making a list based on your suggestions :D
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
Ok...I picked up a mix-a-six (I don't know if that's what they're called but it should be). I got a Flower Power, a Sierra Nevada IPA, a Goose Island, a Bell's Two Hearted, and a Lagunitas. For those of you who are counting, I had to get a Saranac Porter. Love that stuff. Thanks again.
 

ingchr1

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2009
Messages
562
Reaction score
110
Location
Orange County NY
I would also suggest Saranac Legacy IPA, as an IPA on the mild side.



I also want to mention that my wife, who does not like bitter beers or IPAs at all, thought that Bell's Hopslam was good. Go figure. So that may be one to try, if you can find it.
 

plankbr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2013
Messages
423
Reaction score
65
Location
Cincinnati
A fantastic pale ale that has a great malty backbone, and one of my personal favorites, is Great Lakes Burning River, hands down.
 

dobe12

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
903
Reaction score
216
Location
Jersey
Ok...I picked up a mix-a-six (I don't know if that's what they're called but it should be). I got a Flower Power, a Sierra Nevada IPA, a Goose Island, a Bell's Two Hearted, and a Lagunitas. For those of you who are counting, I had to get a Saranac Porter. Love that stuff. Thanks again.

A fantastic mix of IPAs you have there. If you don't find at least one there you like, then you don't have a taste for IPAs yet. It's 8:12am east coast and just reading your list makes me want an IPA!


Sent from my iPhone using Home Brew
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
I'll keep an eye out for saranac legacy and burning river, thank you. I had the lagunitas and the Bell's two hearted last night. Both were fantastic. I actually loved the hoppiness of both. The Bell's was more enjoyable for me, and definitely not too bitter (though it took 2 or 3 sips to get used to haha). Thanks again everyone!

And dobe, I think the general rule is that you can drink anytime you want to on weekends...
 

jjw5015

jwbrews on IG
Joined
Jan 16, 2013
Messages
922
Reaction score
244
Location
Pottstown
Flower Power is one of my favorites, but it is bitter, so I don't know if you will like it. Stone's Go To IPA is a session IPA that I haven't had yet, but I heard it has huge hop aroma and flavor, similar to Enjoy By, but with half the ABV.
 

brewerelated

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
154
Reaction score
61
Location
Los Angeles County
Flower Power is one of my favorites, but it is bitter, so I don't know if you will like it. Stone's Go To IPA is a session IPA that I haven't had yet, but I heard it has huge hop aroma and flavor, similar to Enjoy By, but with half the ABV.
Once I started drinking IPA regularly Enjoy By quickly became my favorite IPA. I live about 45 minutes from a Stone tap room and its an awesome beer if you can get fresh and on tap. I'm gonna have to try their Go To IPA.
 

Weezy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2013
Messages
2,677
Reaction score
622
Location
Pittsburgh
Just IPA is nice and mild, almost creamy (I think its the water). Very approachable.
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
Just IPA is nice and mild, almost creamy (I think its the water). Very approachable.
Creamy? That sounds interesting...actually sounds really good. I ended up enjoying most of the IPAs that I had. I guess my obsession for smelling hops when I'm home brewing has manifested itself in a taste for them as well...at least a little bit. Next up, 1000IBU Mikkeller!
 

solbes

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2011
Messages
2,981
Reaction score
241
Location
Ramsey & Akeley
I'll keep an eye out for saranac legacy and burning river, thank you. I had the lagunitas and the Bell's two hearted last night. Both were fantastic. I actually loved the hoppiness of both. The Bell's was more enjoyable for me, and definitely not too bitter (though it took 2 or 3 sips to get used to haha). Thanks again everyone!
Awesome! And now its time to brew your own Bells 2H. I have brewed it 3x using something in between the recipe below, and that of Northern Brewers Dead Ringer Ale (which is a pretty darn good clone recipe). Both recipes use all centennial hop schedule.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f69/bells-two-hearted-ale-clone-close-they-come-91488/

I like brewing with real Bells yeast (cultured and stepped twice from just about any of Bells beers). Start out at 64 and ramp to 68F over 5 days. Add 2 oz of centennial for dry hop and the Dead Ringer recipe is very close to the original. Usually a fall time thing, so I guess I'll wait to brew it again. Cheers!
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
Hmm...not a bad idea! I have a primary open right now :p perhaps I'll give this a shot, but I'd have to borrow some equipment from another homebrewer
 

garcia

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2014
Messages
317
Reaction score
80
Location
McAllen
Keep drinking malty. Ima huge fan of bocks, real bocks, not shiner bock.
 

kcmobrewer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2013
Messages
678
Reaction score
90
Location
Kansas City
I started on Sierra Nevada Pale Ale several years ago. Love that beer still to this day, as well as lots of other IPAs ;).
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
Keep drinking malty. Ima huge fan of bocks, real bocks, not shiner bock.
I enjoy bocks as well, but I've never had a bitter one. Aren't they not supposed to be bitter? Unless this is your point, just not to try to get into IPAs haha. Don't worry, I'll still respect the bock.
 

bohtimore

New Member
Joined
Apr 10, 2014
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
It took me a little while to appreciate craft beers. I was always a Budweiser/Bud Light/Natty Boh guy. I would try a craft brew every now and then but never really enjoyed an IPA until I had a Heavy Seas "Loose Cannon" (Brewed in Baltimore). I then was told that it was brewed locally and I've been hooked on crafts ever since. I now love all styles of beer and find myself constantly looking for something new to try. I'm not sure if it's available in New York but know it is available in parts up and down the east coast. Since then I've tried hundreds of beers but that still remains one of my favorites!


Sent from my iPad using Home Brew
 
OP
levtbeas

levtbeas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
65
Reaction score
5
Location
New York
It took me a little while to appreciate craft beers. I was always a Budweiser/Bud Light/Natty Boh guy. I would try a craft brew every now and then but never really enjoyed an IPA until I had a Heavy Seas "Loose Cannon" (Brewed in Baltimore). I then was told that it was brewed locally and I've been hooked on crafts ever since. I now love all styles of beer and find myself constantly looking for something new to try. I'm not sure if it's available in New York but know it is available in parts up and down the east coast. Since then I've tried hundreds of beers but that still remains one of my favorites!


Sent from my iPad using Home Brew
Nice, thanks for the suggestion. I'll keep an eye out for it. I have an uncle that lives near Baltimore. Maybe he can ship me some!
 
Top