Abita Wrought Iron IPA
Abita is a brewer that has a very strong following here locally, and I don't really understand it. I've had two of their beers, and they were good, but were they great? No. Enough to have a following? Well, Budweiser has a following, and that is... for another kind of drinker. I suppose if I was a hipster, I might understand why Abita is so revered. For now, I'm at a loss, but this beer may change that.
With sediment positively swirling about the amber-ish beer with the sticky, white head, I go in to take a sniff. It's light and citrusy with a floral background and it seems like a bright beer - very much a departure from the hard and unmoving name and label of the beer. I wonder if they haven't missed their mark on the marketing of this.
First sip is more floral than I had expected. With an IPA, you have to go hop-hard, but the art comes from picking the right combination to produce the most palatable taste. These guys have decided that "iron" reminds them of flowers, and that's the way they went. They have some citrus hops in there to kind of mellow out the floral ones, but they are pretty strong. I wonder if a swig might help. Do I dare? Yes, I do.
Tip-in is light flowers and citrus with a mild carbonation hiss digging around the edges. The middle is almost syrupy in texture as it becomes a little more floral and adds some grains to the mix and maybe a spice or two. It's sweet in the middle, too, and that's unexpected for an IPA. As the finish arrives, the bitterness kind of grabs the tongue and then lets the sweet come back most of the way as the carbonation subsides.
Bottom Line: A pretty nice beer. Not the best in the world, but possibly the best Abita.