Sarnac IPA (Matt Brewing Company)

This bottle’s appearance just screams “Old-Timey stuff!” But it leaves me a little bored.  The hops that are garlanding the picture of a babbling waterfall are okay and remind me slightly of a Sierra Nevada bottle, only less exciting.  The font choice is slightly cartoony, like a 1960’sish product.  The green coloring is cool, but overall this is not a bottle I would save for the shelf.  It’s a rather mundane bottle that screams ordinary.

The beer, however, pours an apple juice yellow with the healthy look of dehydrated piss.  I, of course, poured it out into the Batpint… For those of you who are unaware, the Batpint is literally just a classic pint class with Batman on it… The head is thinner and dissipates rather swiftly, but is nicely white with an ever so slight yellowing to it.  The lacing is quite thin and droopy, however.  The smell is sharply malty, which is odd for an IPA.  There are some nice sharp citrusy hops smells in the initial waft, but the strong underlying backbone of the smell seems to be sweet and caramel sweet malts.  The taste follows up the smell nicely, with a distinct malty flavoring.  The hops are not all together lost though, as the nice crisp burst of orangy citrus seems to swim on the sides of the tongue.  There is also a slight biscuitiness in this beer, which seems to come from the malts.  It feels properly coarse on the mouth with bitterness, while leaving the tongue with a nice thin sheen of saliva and a thirst for more.  It lacks the proper hops-taste that comes with the bitterness though.  Carbonation bubbles nicely against the tongue, and the beers consistency seems nicely balanced.  Overall this is a nice low hopped IPA, it is definitely more reminiscent of the old British IPA’s than of the American variants, but Sarnac’s more old-timey approach to beer makes this choice not too surprising. It’s not a hop lover’s IPA but it is a nice introduction to the style for those who have trouble with bitters.  Decent beer.

Food pairing: I had this beer with a nice clam chowder and it nicely complimented it.  The contrast between the seafood sweetness and the hops and malts made for a delicious meal. I would advise trying seafood with this beer.

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