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21st Anniversary - Hail To The Hop Thief

September, 2017
Judges Rating: 
23 / 24
6 / 6
38 / 40
9 / 10
Overall Impression: 
19 / 20

Stone Brewing's 21st Anniversary Hail to the Hop Thief is being evaluated as a Double IPA (Category 22A) from the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines.

This beer is a hop showcase in all aspects, the aroma is a cornucopia of mixed stone fruit and tropical fruit, with a light grapefruit zest kick.  A light bready, grainy maltiness opens up as the beer warms and provides a pleasant balance to the big hop character.  The flavor turns more toward citrus, with grapefruit being the predominate character, and fresh pineapple and mango following closely behind. A light bready, toasty malt character appears in the middle with light residual malt sweetness.  

If you like the tongue assaulting, eye scrunching, grimacing hop bitterness that is classic to many double and triple style IPAs - then you probably will not like this beer much. The moderately high hop bitterness is extremely smooth and well integrated, and is quite complimentary overall.  It has the alcohol kick expected from a 9.8% beer, but as with the bitterness it is smooth and pleasant.  Enjoy this one now while the hop character is fresh and bright.