Phillips Green Reaper Fresh Hop IPA: Brewed in Victoria, BC at a strength of 6.5% abv this Fresh Hop IPA was a little late to the scene compared to a lot of the other island fresh hop beers with Willamette hops grown in Nanaimo which perhaps were harvested at a different time than the popular local one’s from Chilliwack, BC (aka Sartori). I have to admit, this beer has a pretty sweet label and name which is perfect for it’s early fall release and I had my bottle about 3 days after it hit the shelves in some of the Greater Vancouver locations near the end of fresh hop hunting season.
Aroma and Appearance: Typical two finger foam pour with a clear golden yellow colour and some small slow riser bubbles. The aroma was lemon citrus, grass with some floral notes, some bread malt and a tea leaf like aroma that I get from a lot of the fresh hop beers.
Flavour: This beer had a strong, overpowering oily lemon flavour with some orange peel, some floral notes and bready malt with a very mild bitter finish. The oily lemon was almost soap like, which reminded me off an off flavour in my recent class but didn’t have that buttery popcorn touch that diacetyl is known for so I don’t think it was that..
Overall Impression: Soap like isn’t a good descriptor in my books, wasn’t impressed and I actually had two bottles from different locations that tasted the same.
Rating: I give it a below average rating of 4/10, disappointing but drinkable.
Food Pairing: Perhaps some spicy nachos or something might clean this up a bit.
Phillips was kind enough to make this video of their process for this beer, it’s worth a watch. I kinda feel sorry for the hop pickers since they had shorts sleeves and no gloves to protect their hands and arms (ouch), but they got the job done.