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Make IPA Clear Again

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Nagorg

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At the risk of backlash, yes I'm posting this! Am I the only one (or one of a few) that isnt on board with the Haze Craze?

I might be open minded to the "style" if it weren't for the association with IPA... Other than the large qty's of hops used, I dont think these beers are characteristic of IPA at all. Personally, the lack of clarity is off-putting and I believe its damaged what a lot of folks think beers should look like. For example, now you can be served a glass of yeast and nobody thinks there is anything wrong with the pour!

I'll admit that I have tasted some that were pretty tasty and had a good aroma but still... IPA?? Really??? Can we just not have a "Hazy Ale" category instead of bastardizing IPA?

MIPACA.... I need to make some hats!
 

brewswithshoes

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Funny that we cross posted opposite ends !!

While i am brewing my first NEIPA this week, I'm honestly hoping I don't create a milkshake. I'm not interested in brewing a beer that i have to chew thru, but i am hopeful that using some of the processes of NEIPA and a yeast that says it extracts/attaches to hop material to pull all the flavor/aroma out is what intrigues me.

I don't care if it clears up or stays hazy as long as I can squeeze all the hop goodness out of the additions.

Next brew will be a lager that gets dry hopped with about 4 oz of Citra about a week before kegging. I will be going for CRYSTAL CLEAR on that one :cask:
 

Gravitysucks

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At the risk of backlash, yes I'm posting this! Am I the only one (or one of a few) that isnt on board with the Haze Craze?

I might be open minded to the "style" if it weren't for the association with IPA... Other than the large qty's of hops used, I dont think these beers are characteristic of IPA at all. Personally, the lack of clarity is off-putting and I believe its damaged what a lot of folks think beers should look like. For example, now you can be served a glass of yeast and nobody thinks there is anything wrong with the pour!

I'll admit that I have tasted some that were pretty tasty and had a good aroma but still... IPA?? Really??? Can we just not have a "Hazy Ale" category instead of bastardizing IPA?

MIPACA.... I need to make some hats!
I have to agree. As someone that's been drinking English IPAs for 30 plus years and is very fond of them I have to say I'm not too keen on any of the American IPA versions.
 
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Qhrumphf

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I abhor the haze craze.

I don't mind the character- I like the hop forward flavor and aroma without the teeth stripping bitterness. Far moreso than the west coast IBU arms race from what, 7 years ago?

Hell, I don't even mind the haze implicitly.

What bugs me is the insistence on haze.

The Untappd review of "tastes and smells amazing but not hazy enough! [One star]"

The brewers putting flour and the like to artificially generate permanent haze.

If the flavor and aroma is there and the haze a byproduct, cool.

All else equal, I prefer clear. But if clearing it reduces the character, I'm ok with some haze.
images.jpeg
 

Kickass

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I’m beyond over it.

I visited a local brewery this weekend (in southern CA) and every “hoppy” beer was hazy. Literally: hazy pale ale, hazy session ipa, mosaic ipa (that was not clear but not labeled as hazy) and hazy double IPA. Enough is enough.
 
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Nagorg

Nagorg

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ll else equal, I prefer clear. But if clearing it reduces the character, I'm ok with some haze.
Agreed... There are things that can attribute a degree of haze, dry hopping etc... And Hefeweizen is supposed to be hazy from wheat proteins and yeast that hasnt flocculated; should we call those NEIPA's now too? But the degree of poor clarity and the general acceptance of it just drives me nuts!
 

Kickass

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Additionally, I know winter is short here but a red ale and a RIS are too few for malty options. Make beer malty again! I’m not a complete hater but one hazy and one kettle sour with way too much of whatever bs clever fruit combo your brewer finds edgy and unique is enough. Who knows, I may be in the minority in wanting a wide variety of beers when I visit your tap house.
 

HopsAreGood

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All the hipster hypelord neckbeard hangouts around here produce multiples of the three. Hazebombs, excessively fruited quick sours, massive pastry stouts.
These are the three current hip beers..it is what it is. People like them, and breweries are good at marketing them. Feel free to complain about them or embrace them. I like to refer back to the good old saying, "it's just beer." I enjoy all three of these styles along with much more traditional beers. Again, it's just beer.
 

Qhrumphf

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These are the three current hip beers..it is what it is. People like them, and breweries are good at marketing them. Feel free to complain about them or embrace them. I like to refer back to the good old saying, "it's just beer." I enjoy all three of these styles along with much more traditional beers. Again, it's just beer.
I've accepted haze and pastry. Embraced perhaps in the former as long as the flavor and aroma are there (though I stop short of milkshake).

I also very much enjoy fruit sours.

I draw a firm line at breweries knowingly releasing can/bottle bombs of umfermented, unpasteurized fruit, thinking a disclaimer of "keep cold and drink fresh" is good enough.

Those breweries will hurt someone eventually (if they haven't already). If their conscience is somehow okay with that, there is no other option. They should be *forcibly closed*.
 
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Nagorg

Nagorg

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I will not embrace them. They have invaded the IPA space. I have to be leery of trying new beers now because of them; they are everywhere!

Now I have to look for key words that give a clue that its a hazy mess since I cant rely on "NEIPA" to be used. I've been bit more than once by this and sorely disappointed when my glass became full of what looks like OJ. Oskar Blues Can-O-Bliss became a Can-O-Mess and I gave away the rest of the sixer.

On the other hand, now if I brew a beer with a clarity problem I just tell folks its New England style and they nod in acceptance. lol
 

HopsAreGood

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I will not embrace them. They have invaded the IPA space. I have to be leery of trying new beers now because of them; they are everywhere!

Now I have to look for key words that give a clue that its a hazy mess since I cant rely on "NEIPA" to be used. I've been bit more than once by this and sorely disappointed when my glass became full of what looks like OJ. Oskar Blues Can-O-Bliss became a Can-O-Mess and I gave away the rest of the sixer.

On the other hand, now if I brew a beer with a clarity problem I just tell folks its New England style and they nod in acceptance. lol
I should preface this by saying I come in peace, I really do. This community is so valuable to all of its members and I'm very thankful that I found it.

That being said, who cares? The beers that you enjoy still exist and I'm sure you can get your hands on them, and I'd assume also make them. Every industry has waves of things that become all the rage, and then the hype eventually dies down, but the core idea sticks around for those that like it. If you hate the haze then that's totally cool, but there are clearly a ton of people that love it.

I agree with you that there are a lot of annoying fan boys who know nothing about beer, and complain about beers not being hazy enough, which is ridiculous. The haze is a byproduct of the process...not the goal. And I can completely understand having a certain view on a style of beer (or music, or film, or art, or whatever) and then having some crappy version of it come along, and have the masses fall in love with it and have it annoy you.

It's like old timers telling the young whipper snappers that they don't know what real music is. Things evolve, progress, and people will always push the limits eventually when it comes to creative expression. Beer is no different. I personally brew a lot of NEIPAs, and I totally understand that on the surface it looks like a mess, is probably really easy to make, and is an insult to all of the great iPas that came before. But I'll
tell you that to do it right, and nail it in all aspects, it's really not that easy.

A lot of them get a bad wrap because they're just thrown together and sold to the masses as quickly as possible. But the really, really good examples of this style are quite incredible. Obviously tastes differ and I'm not necessarily trying to convince you to feel differently about them, but maybe just open your mind a little and understand that just because you don't like them, doesn't mean there isn't something to them.

Again, it's just beer, and I personally welcome any and all styles of it.

My two cents.
 

CascadesBrewer

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I have to agree. As someone that's been drinking English IPAs for 30 plus years and is very fond of them I have to say I'm not too keen on any of the American IPA versions. If you want fizzy grapefruit juice buy a soda stream and some grapefruit syrup and save yourself an 8 hour brew day.
Speaking of English IPAs...while it can be said that NEIPAs are not a "real IPA"...those 185 IBU hop bomb West Coast IPAs were not much like an English IPA.

I will agree that I am slightly tired of NEIPA and how I have to ask if the beer on the menu labeled "IPA" is clear or not, I do find myself enjoying these lighter IPAs and Pale Ales with more late/dry hops. I have my first homebrewed NEIPA on tap and it is one of the better beers I have brewed...maybe more because of the Mosaic/Citra hops than my skill.
 
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Nagorg

Nagorg

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If you hate the haze then that's totally cool, but there are clearly a ton of people that love it.
What I dont care for is the association with poor clarity and IPA. You are right, lots of people love it and I acknowledge some I've tried actually tasted pretty good. But they didnt strike me as IPA. Others I've tried were not so good though and left me with a feeling of a yeast (or flour) coated tongue.

Again, lets move the haze into its own non-IPA style and MAKE IPA CLEAR AGAIN! :)
 

HopsAreGood

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I will agree that I am slightly tired of NEIPA and how I have to ask if the beer on the menu labeled "IPA" is clear or not, I do find myself enjoying these lighter IPAs and Pale Ales with more late/dry hops. I have my first homebrewed NEIPA on tap and it is one of the better beers I have brewed...maybe more because of the Mosaic/Citra hops than my skill.
Again, I come in peace. I like good banter but are you guys serious about asking wether or not an IPA on someone's menu is clear? You really ask this question?

Aren't you most, if not solely concerned with how it tastes? What if you were blind?

It's like you're hung up on a factor that is completely irrelevant. You want it clear because that's how it's always been done.

If it's lack of clarity is viewed as a flaw, but it tastes incredible, do you really care? Serious question here.

I should add that I also love clear as day, high Ibu, west coast IPAs. I just feel there's room for all of them.
 

CascadesBrewer

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Again, I come in peace. I like good banter but are you guys serious about asking wether or not an IPA on someone's menu is clear? You really ask this question?
I just find that if I am in the mood for a West Coast IPA I have to ask if the "IPA" listed on the menu is actually one. More and more Hazy Citra/Mosaic beers are just listed as IPA.
 

schematix

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Again, I come in peace. I like good banter but are you guys serious about asking wether or not an IPA on someone's menu is clear? You really ask this question?

Aren't you most, if not solely concerned with how it tastes? What if you were blind?

It's like you're hung up on a factor that is completely irrelevant. You want it clear because that's how it's always been done.

If it's lack of clarity is viewed as a flaw, but it tastes incredible, do you really care? Serious question here.
No i like it clear because i don't like drinking yeasty muddy sludge. It's not attractive.

My standard HB IPA is something similar in flavor to NEIPA, but with a substantial bittering addition, and without all the haze causing crap. It's clear, but not brilliant. Taste is amazeballs.
 

deadwolfbones

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To be clear, my post was sarcastic. I generally prefer "juicy" IPAs to the IBU-pumped west coast style. But I'm happy to drink good examples of either.
 
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Nagorg

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What if you were blind?
If a frog had wings... Thats clearly not the case.. Pun intended! :D Yes, clarity does matter. But what is also troubling is the general acceptance of poor clarity. There was a time when I might be served a glass of yeast from the bottom of a keg and I could turn it away. Now, I'm looked at like an idiot and told "thats normal"..
 

HopsAreGood

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I just find that if I am in the mood for a West Coast IPA I have to ask if the "IPA" listed on the menu is actually one. More and more Hazy Citra/Mosaic beers are just listed as IPA.
Fair enough. The styles are quite different and if you're in the mood for a clear west coast offering then I can support that.
 
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HopsAreGood

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No i like it clear because i don't like drinking yeasty muddy sludge. It's not attractive.

My standard HB IPA is something similar in flavor to NEIPA, but with a substantial bittering addition, and without all the haze causing crap. It's clear, but not brilliant. Taste is amazeballs.
I actually prefer a much more bitter NEIPA as well. It's kind if like a hybrid east coast/west coast. I tend to shoot for 70-80 ibu on an 8% NEIPA. It helps to balance out the sweetness. I feel like trillium does this pretty well.

One thing I'll say though is that muddy sludge isn't always the result of yeast. I've brewed muddy sludge with super flocculent yeast, even dry hopping solely after all yeast has been removed. (Sans what little bit may be lingering in suspension)
 

HopsAreGood

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To be clear, my post was sarcastic. I generally prefer "juicy" IPAs to the IBU-pumped west coast style. But I'm happy to drink good examples of either.
Agreed. I like them all. I can enjoy a super dry, tounge numbing 100+theoretical ibu west coaster, and a 30 Ibu, super wet, round, east coast version.
 

HopsAreGood

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If a frog had wings... Thats clearly not the case.. Pun intended! :D Yes, clarity does matter. But what is also troubling is the general acceptance of poor clarity. There was a time when I might be served a glass of yeast from the bottom of a keg and I could turn it away. Now, I'm looked at like an idiot and told "thats normal"..
I would turn away a glass of yeast immediately. But in my experience that's not really what I'm being served. Perhaps your experience differs.
 

AZCoolerBrewer

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It’s kind of speaking out of both sides of my mouth, but I love a super clear super hoppy West Coast IPA and think that NEIPA is at best unbalanced and at worst basically a Hefeweizen. So I say make IPA clear again from a personal standpoint. From a craft beer standpoint however, I love a good fad because it helps brewers explore the space and figure out what’s good and how to execute styles that are dynamic and innovative.
 

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I'm not against the juicy hop flavors of NEIPA. In fact a simple west coast tongue thrashing 100+ IBU recipe is a nice base to lay on all those hops. Just exclude all the adjuncts. 97% 2-row and 3% crystal makes a damn fine beer.

The secret though is meticulous exclusion of oxygen at every step except yeast pitching.
 

Veets

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I don't mind that hazy beers exist and are popular, or that "juicy" hop flavor beers exist and are popular. Like the OP, I don't like that these new styles so often take the IPA name, and as a result you never know what you're going to get when you order an IPA off a menu or tap handle any more.

Please make my hat "MIPABA" (Make IPAs Bitter Again) and PM me with payment instructions. :)
 

Eltes

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I'll start by saying I really like NEIPAs. That being said though, I understand some of the things that annoy some others.

I think the massive hype around NEIPA has allowed many many brewers to get away with beers that are mediocre at best. I've had plenty of NEIPAs where all I could taste was hop burn (hop burn is an off flavor!).

What I also find annoying sometimes is that in many places NEIPA seems to have completely replaced west coast IPAs. A lot of breweries that used to make great west coast IPAs are now making almost exclusively NEIPAs. Like people have already said in this thread, I think there is room for both styles (and many others of course!), but at the moment NEIPA seems to make up like 90% of all IPA.
 

madscientist451

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Yes, clarity does matter. But what is also troubling is the general acceptance of poor clarity.
Huge industrial breweries do a great job of making clear beer.
They can produce large volumes of a very consistent product from multiple locations.
But does all clear beer have a desirable taste?
I don't care what the beer looks like, I'm drinking for flavor.
NEIPA's aren't my favorite beer, but I've had a few that are memorable:
 
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Nagorg

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But does all clear beer have a desirable taste?
Absolutely not... And that's not what this thread is really about. Its not even about clarity in general but the recent association and craze for poor clarity in a style that should be decoupled from "IPA".

Lets get a new style for poor clarity beers sanctioned and drop the IPA designation from these beers!

Lets MAKE IPA CLEAR AGAIN! :mug:
 

TheMadKing

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I completely agree with the OP and other "traditionalists"

I like a well made NEIPA and I can ignore the Mississippi color if it's good enough but most of them don't even taste good to me. They taste overly sweet and fruity!

I went to the store a week ago looking for a regular old fashioned west coast IPA and the ONLY one I could find was Bell's two hearted... Which is a great beer but I've had it about a million times. Every other IPA was labeled as hazy or milkshake or doublejuicybannanablamahoppykerpow

I bought one other one that just said American IPA, but alas I poured an overcarbonated mess of opacity.

MIPACA!
 

bobeer

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Again, I come in peace. I like good banter but are you guys serious about asking wether or not an IPA on someone's menu is clear? You really ask this question?

Aren't you most, if not solely concerned with how it tastes? What if you were blind?

It's like you're hung up on a factor that is completely irrelevant. You want it clear because that's how it's always been done.

If it's lack of clarity is viewed as a flaw, but it tastes incredible, do you really care? Serious question here.

I should add that I also love clear as day, high Ibu, west coast IPAs. I just feel there's room for all of them.
I think people are concerned with taste which is why they ask if the beer is clear or not. It's much easier to associate a visual description rather than a taste description since everyone's tastes are different. If it's hazy you can almost always assume these days it's more towards the neipa style. If you don't want that you have every right to ask if it's this or that since beer costs $7+ a pint now and even the "pint" glasses are getting smaller. You could totally tell the difference between a west coast ipa and a neipa if you were blind.

I was at the store last night looking for a west coast style ipa and all that was there were 4 pack tall boys and I can pretty much guarantee they were all hazy/ne style ipa's. Some of them actually said so on the can, which I think is the way to go, but most of them were just called ipa. They were all $15+ bucks which is too rich for my blood. I finally found a 21st amendment Tasty IPA sixer for $9 wedged way in the back, haha.

I'm all for progression, that's why homebrewing is what it is today, but not everyone has to like every new thing that comes out. I personally can't stand the haze craze and neipa's but I appreciate that someone created something new in an industry that has been around for a long time. There's something to be said about that I think. It's awesome that beer has been around for this long and we can still create new styles, tastes and flavors. Ugly beer or not. Haha.
 

bobeer

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What, too good for the 15% malt bomb pastry stouts that are also everywhere?

All the hipster hypelord neckbeard hangouts around here produce multiples of the three. Hazebombs, excessively fruited quick sours, massive pastry stouts.
I live in NoVa as well and I can attest to this. So many breweries around here only offer cloudy ipa's, huge pastry stouts, and super fruit beers. I get they're just offering what is popular but I do often wonder if they can brew other styles that aren't so forgiving. I guess time will tell.

I can't drink the pastry stouts. They give me the worst headache due to all the sugar that's in them. They're much too sweet anyway. There was some brewery a while back that put cotton candy sugar in an IPA or something and it was ugly as hell and awful but everyone seemed to like it. Each to their own but I can't get down with any of it. Luckily we all can brew what our taste buds enjoy.
 

Beerwildered

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Aren't you most, if not solely concerned with how it tastes? What if you were blind?

It's like you're hung up on a factor that is completely irrelevant. You want it clear because that's how it's always been done.
I also come in peace. I want to quibble with your sense of relevance.

Chefs and gastronomes are fond of telling us that we “eat with our eyes,” and I agree. Why would I want to eat something that looks nasty, or prepared in a dirty kitchen, but tastes amazing? I don’t. How food (and drink, presumably) is prepared and presented is paramount to our appreciation of how it tastes.

I will add mine to the voices asking for clarity (literally and figuratively) in the IPA category. I *wanted* to like Hazy IPA - truly. But when it started getting confused with real IPA that’s when I got frustrated. It’s not IPA. It is beer - but not IPA.

I was eating out with the family last night and I ordered an IPA from the menu. What showed up was a lazy and hazy disappointment.

And it’s true - calling these hipster hopped up fruit juices “IPA” is Lazy. It lacks imagination. Creating them is hard work - and truly this might be an innovation in the craft. So let’s stop being Lazy and create a new category.
 

Jag75

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Playing devils advocate here . What about IPAs that are less then 5.5 abv . They call them session IPAs . However IPAs were originally made higher then 5.5 , so are they not IPAs? What about Reds . You have Irish , Scottish and American Red ales. I see it as IPAs have different styles . IPA were highly hopped and high abv . IPA isnt a clarity term . Same can be said about stouts . How many different styles of stouts are there. A NEIPA doesnt have to be chunky with yeast and hop sludge, in fact that sounds gross to me . I Do make them , they aren't thick with that crud but they're not clear. To me theres just a variety of different styles of IPAs . If I feel like a west coast I drink one , if I feel like a NEIPA I drink it. Same goes for Reds and Stouts . What do you think of IPAL ? Does it have the right to have IPA in it or does it have the right to be a Lager with all the hop additions . I'm glad there is different styles of beers .
 
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