Dan Martich's picture

Judge’s Review: 75 Rating – Hop Manna by Shmaltz Brewing Co.

December, 2018
Judges Rating: 
16 / 24
5 / 6
32 / 40
7 / 10
Overall Impression: 
15 / 20

Hop Manna by Shmaltz Brewing Co. is being evaluated as an American IPA (Category 21A) from the 2015 BJCP guidelines. 

Reddish copper with a light tan head with a light haze, the head texture was foamy with big bubbles that quickly collapsed.

Initial layered aromas of caramel, and biscuit malt with a low degree of orange peel and pine from the hops. A subtle malty sweetness is detected but really nothing more. A bit of a stale note develops; this is further verified by the date on the bottle showing to be 3 months old. Hops become skunky when the glass is swirled, as oxidation is also roused. Very light floral notes are detected as it warms.

The flavor resembles the aroma; muted notes of hops, grains and caramel malt with a high bittering finish, the beer leaves the palate bone dry. The balance is toward the bittering hops, as it is hard to discern the flavor hops character. Clean fermentation without too many esters but they could have disappeared given the age of the bottle.

Medium-full body, with medium high carbonation as per the style guidelines. There’s an unpleasant astringency factor possibly from the hops given the high bitterness. The alcoholic warmth is medium-high and increases as the beer warms up.

An average beer that has probably seen better days. As an agricultural product, beer as most produce, has its peaks and valleys. The off aroma and flavor notes speak to this beer’s freshness. I’d like to sample this beer fresher; when the aromas and flavors are in their prime.