Epiphyte (Deciduous Brewing Company)

Style: Double India Pale Ale

8.0% ABV

From: Newmarket, NH

Brewery’s Notes: “Our 8.0%abv interpretation of a double IPA. Brewed with no Citra, no Mosaic, no Galaxy, no Azacca, and no Simcoe.”

I like how I have to look up the definitions of Deciduous’ names. Learning and beer should go together more often. This lovely little ale pours out the color of oranging bronze. It is cloudy and near opaque in body, yet the shadows of your fingers can still be seen on the other side of the glass. The beer pours with a wispy head of brilliant white sud-bubbles, and then quickly fades to a scrim that leaves nice, tight night walls of lacing and cling. On the nose, the beer smells of dank earth, sea brine, scallions, a little chive, a little garlic, and some sticky pine resin. Beneath all that is a lovely punch of caramelly bread, crust, a slight whiff of hot booze, and a sweet orange contingent that melds nicely with the other players. This is a DIPA of the dank and earthy variety, and it revels in those features. On the tongue, the beer tastes of bitter scallions rolled in dirt, loam, leaves, and weed, and then very lightly drizzled with caramel sauce and some pepper. It tastes briefly of sweet caramel and soft citric acid before indulging in a bristly, earthy, brininess that then blends herbal, chive-like bitters with earthy, dank weed and sticky pine. The finish is of wet pine sap, slight candied orange, a splash of sea salt, loam, a little earthy dirt, and a breeze of hot booze. The aftertaste is lined with a soft bitter mint, but more strongly carries the dank bitters with splashes of caramel malt. In the mouth, the beer feels medium-bodied and more languid. It oozes then snaps, providing a nice bitter bite in the finish that quenches down on the palate and squeezes spittle from the salivitory glands. The tongue is left resinous, slightly astringent on the edges, yet neutral in the middle of the tongue. Overall, this is a big old low earthy, dank DIPA that carries a great little splash of brine. It’s nothing earth shattering in the realm of DIPA’s, and definitely wavers on the garlic-line as you sip, but the sulfur levels stay mellow enough for this to be a pleasant, earthy romp over the tongue. This doesn’t quite have the depth of Freak of Nature in terms of earthy DIPA’s, but is a skilled and tasty entry in the style. It is not my favorite from Deciduous, but I’ve admittedly lost my luster for the DIPA game. It is a good entry in the style, however, and should never be turned down. IPA hunters should enjoy it for its earthy, classic romp into the American hop and its low tastes. Nice stuff.

 

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