Dogfish Head Flesh & Blood IPA

From the high to the low, Dogfish Head has been almost entirely on the positive side of my ratings. Yes, there is always one outlier, but they experiment and I get to enjoy the results pretty reliably. This one is a head scratcher as to what the hell it is supposed to be: is it a red or an IPA? Well, there is one sure way to find out.

The red hue almost looks like it was added after the brewing process happened. Maybe I'm being cynical, but that's the impression I get. The aroma is surprisingly hoppy. I say it's surprising, as I expected it to be more like a red or amber ale, and it is clearly an IPA from the aroma. I wonder what the taste will bring.

First sip is a sweet and hoppy beer. I had definitely not expected sweet malt to be foremost in the beer, and it takes a back seat to the hops, but the malt is making me aware of its location and the reason that it is here - to combat bitterness and rise victorious like a gladiator holding the severed head of his enemy. Okay, that might be a bit much, but you know what I mean.

Tip-in is moderate carbonation burn with lots of the sweet malt and a mix of floral and citrus hops. The middle is more carbonation with a receding of most of the other flavors; it gets very mild - almost watery like a real red ale might. The finish is a spike in hops with citrus - nothing but citrus - all up in there with attitude and quite a bit of deliciousness. Yup, the finish is alright by me.

Bottom Line: A unique take on both a red and an IPA. It takes some of the best of both to make a very good beer.

3.25/5

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