Terrapin Hi-5 IPA

Terrapin's wares have been up and down, but they are generally right in the middle. As a consequence, I don't actually have very high hopes for an outstanding beer, but I also expect not to have undrinkable swill. I don't generally aim for the middle-of-the-pack beers, and I hope they don't, either. I want a very good beer... might this be it?

It's a yellow beer with a slight orange glow that has a nice head that leaves a lot of lacing, and I, as you probably know, love that. The aroma is expectedly citrus hops with a touch of spices. I can't smell much more, as the aroma is really gentle. I really like California IPAs, and I'm going to love this, I'm sure.

First sip is NICE. It has the easy citrus calmness of a California IPA, and I really like the way it's full of flavor without needing to assault the senses. As a sipping beer, I can already say that this is among the best of the all-day IPA styles. It is simple enough to just drain the can right now, but it's not harsh on the front or back end, so you can sip it like you know how many calories are in a beer (177 in this case).

Tip-in is very citrus (mostly orange and maybe tangerine) with carbonation tingling around the outside. The malt is very light bread that is just keeping the bitterness at bay. The middle is a very smooth light grain and citrus with spices highlighting the hops to the point that I think I can even taste floral hints. The finish comes in with almost nothing. It's odd - it kind of fades away, and then it has a glimmer of bitterness as it flashes over the horizon in the trail-off.

Bottom Line: Maybe I should move to the West Coast. These beers are just sensational.



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