pFriem Family Brewers Down Under IPA: Brewed in Hood River, OR this IPA comes in at a strength of 7.2% abv and 65 IBUs. pFriem is just starting to send more bottled product up to BC, but it can also be found in Washington State and they make some pretty stellar soured beers and saisons that I hope to see here in the future. This one was bottled on May 20th, 2015 so it’s just nearing the end of its freshness window and needed to be opened soon.
Aroma and Appearance: Down Under IPA pours with two fingers of foam, a clear golden colour and very little visible carbonation in the glass. The aroma is very herbal, with cereal grains, mild pepper notes, some earthy floral overtones and a touch of honey.
Flavour: Mirroring the aroma, the floral earthy notes are quite apparent up front mixing into the grainy malts and yeasty texture of the beer. As it warms closer to cask temperature, some sweet caramel appears in the middle as well as peach skin and fresh orange juice notes. Finally, it finishes dry and super bitter featuring lots of herbs and pine resin which causes your palate to tingle a little bit due to the intensity of the bitterness.
Overall Impression: On my first sip I initially noted that this was too bitter, however as it warmed the sweetness of the malts came out and counterbalanced some of the early bitterness making this much more enjoyable.
Rating: I gave it an excellent rating of 8/10, don’t be intimidated by your first sip if you find the bitterness too much, let it warm up a bit and try it again. It packs a delightful sweet and bitter 1-2 punch that I crave in IPA’s.
Food Pairing: Given the herbal nature of this beer, I’d suggest some lamb chops, sausages or herbal goat cheese as a food pairing.
Be sure to check out their Instagram page to keep up to date with their new releases. This is their product shot for the release of the beer as you can see none of my tasting notes matched their’s, which can happen as all palates are unique.