Crooked Stave Hop Savant "Centennial" Brettanomyces IPA

Fourth in my series of Crooked Stave project beers that feature a different hop, and I've been impressed mostly by the fact that the yeast that they picked is too much for most of the hops. The brettanomyces yeast just stomps on everything in its path, and I have yet to find a hop that manages to stand up to it. Will the Centennial hops change things?

If anything, the beer is a slightly lighter shade of dusty copper-orange than the other three. The head is exactly the same, and I still very much like it. The white, sticky, patchy head that leaves lacing on the sides of the glass like a real champ. Craft hoppy beers should aspire to have a head this nice. The aroma is, again, overwhelmed by the brettanomyces yeast. There's still some citrus in there from the hops, but it is much less than the others.

First sip is less... spiky than the others. Instead, it seems relatively mild for a sour, funky beer. The citrus is really, really mild. It's like a mango or a tangerine rather than an orange or a lemon, and it hides behind that yeast. That yeast is just overpowering things, but it's still somehow tamed by this hops to the point of the overall effect being gentle enough.

Tip-in is mango and tangerine with an associated tangy/tartness. The middle comes in with a much more powerful smack of the hops, but it's a smooth kind of passionfruit or tropical medley that just sails on down the gullet with no problem.Then, the finish comes to bring us a tangy/funky twist, but it's not nearly as harsh as the others of this line of beer. Instead, it actually leaves a tangy, almost sweet sensation on the lips from, presumably, a malt of some kind.

Bottom Line: So far, the best of the batch. This beer is calm and confident in its presentation of these hops, and the hops are dealing with the very strong brettanomyces yeast very well.

3.25/5

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