I have been wanting to try this beer for quite some time now. In fact for at least a few months as the label awaited MN approval I hoped a few bottles or a keg would make their way to our “neighborhood” but no such luck. At Autumn Brew Review I was so close (had my hopes up a little) only to have the truck arrive the following week due to issues in transit. A couple of weeks back a very limited supply arrived here in the Twin Cities. I headed over to Zipps Liquor (my first time
there and I must add very impressed) and grabbed two bottles as well as some other nice treats from Stone and Alaskan. I believe most stores here in MN received a 1/2 a case or less of this beer so I was excited to locate some. At $4.50 or so for a 12oz. bottle your average beer drinker might think this is on the spendy side but for a limited release beer like this it’s worth every penny. Plus there is a bonus, proceeds, according to Stone brewmaster Mitch Steele, will go to Earthquake / Tsunami relief in Japan which is awesome.
I have been sitting on this IPA when really it has been ready to drink since before it even arrived in MN. I had a pre winter MN cold and didn’t want to try the beer until I could enjoy/taste it. Tonight seemed like a great night to crack it open.
Initial thoughts: There is not a big nose to it, the aroma’s are pretty subtle. It’s not as hoppy as many of the IPA’s on the market, but I like that. It’s has a smooth yet somewhat complex taste. I don’t find it overly bitter at all. As I drank some and then poured the rest of the bottle into the glass the aroma was a little stronger. I was thinking there would be more sediments with a Green Tea IPA but not really.
Beer Advocate gives it a B+ and I think I would go with an A-, partly because this is late October and this IPA was probably ready to drink in mid July. Overall though I am very impressed and since my friend in TN I was going to send the 2nd bottle to already had the chance to try it I might just enjoy that one this weekend.
Japanese Green Tea IPA from Baird / Ishii / Stone: 9.2% Alc/Vol