Michael Heniff's picture

Judge's Review: 93 Rating - Saddleback by Uinta Brewing

November, 2018


Judges Rating: 
22 / 24
6 / 6
38 / 40
10 / 10
Overall Impression: 
17 / 20

Saddleback by Uinta Brewing is a Brut IPA and is being evaluated as a Specialty IPA (category 21B of the 2015 BJCP Beer Style Guidelines). Brut IPA is a recent addition to the ever-evolving family of IPAs and has not currently been categorized by the BJCP as of yet. Brut IPAs are noted for their forward hop profile similar to other IPA styles but with a very thin and dry mouthfeel and high effervescence. Uinta describes Saddleback as "an easy-sipping, light-bodied and effervescent brew, with hop-forward aromas of gooseberries, white wine and passion fruit." Saddleback measures up at 4.0% ABV and 30 IBUs.

Saddleback pours light golden in color with a slight haze and a big, fluffy white head. The aroma is hop-forward with aromatics of honeydew melon, tropical fruit, and peach with no malt or ester contribution. The body is thin and very effervescent as expected. The flavor is similar to the aroma; the beer is hop-forward with very little malt character. The hop flavors are tropical fruit, melon and generic citrus with a hint of green apple. The beer finishes very dry, carbonic and refreshing with a lingering citrus and tropical fruit hop flavor. This is a lower-alcohol, more sessionable version compared to other commercial Brut IPAs (most Brut IPAs tend to measure at typical American IPA strengths of 6 to 8% abv). Regardless, this Brut IPA is quite enjoyable and would be especially enjoyable on a hot summer day. Saddleback may become the ultimate summer thirst quencher after a long run, mowing the lawn or while spending time at the pool. Enjoy!