Friday, April 19, 2013

Stone Enjoy By IPA Review

Name: Stone Enjoy By IPA
Style: Imperial IPA
ABV: 9.4%

NOTE: This is the 05.17.13 Batch

After a heavy social media push here in Minnesota to Stone Brewing (In other words: we annoyed them enough to the point where they gave in), we finally have what is considered to be a one of the most high-profile IPAs in America: Stone Enjoy By. Yesterday I mentioned that I would be grabbing some on my way to work, but when I got there they had no yet received their shipment, which was scheduled to arrive in the afternoon. As I went into work, little did I know that Mother Nature had other plans for me, as she was determined to stop me at all costs.

You see, we here in Minnesota have long, crappy winters that sometimes persist into April. Well, as you might have guessed yesterday was one of those days. As I got off work, I was greeted by a scene of pure white that would've given Tony Montana a cocaine-gasm. The streets were covered in snow, people were sliding across the road like an Irish rendition of The Hokey Pokey and there were even people singing "White Christmas" by Bing Crosby. It became apparent to me that she had sent forth her minion, Old Man Winter, to put a stop to my plans.

Undaunted, I made the decision to press forward and make the long, treacherous journey to my liquor store in South Minneapolis where I had been told it would be in earlier in the day. Since many other places had run out of it, I was more than determined than ever to get my hands on it. Through persistence, skill, and luck, I had finally made it. I walked in, bought a bottle from the cooler, and was on my way home. By that time, the snow had tapered off and driving became much easier. Old Man Winter had given up and realized how foolish it was to go up against a warrior's unsinkable spirit; I was victorious!

I went home, put the bottle in my fridge for a couple hours while I got dinner ready and played some Bioshock: Infinite. After sitting for a couple hours, I decided it was time to taste the spoils of victory by finally trying it out.

The first thing I noticed was the bottling date, 04/12/13, so it was bottled a mere six days prior. I'm used to having beers about a month after canning/bottling, not less than a week, with the exception of Surly Wet which I had about 3 days after canning. Nothing like fresh beer!

Upon pouring it has a surprisingly clear orange color. It doesn't really have much in terms of head retention although I do want to point out it leaves behind a good amount of lacing.

The nose is.....well.........very, very hoppy. You have floral, piney and citrus hops all lined up, each as strong as the other. It also some sweet malt and apple cider notes, which also come off as feeling "fresh." Oh yes, you can also smell this if you are sitting 2-3 feet from it like I was.

Flavorwise, the first thing that pops into my head is 'This is like Surly Wet", it's a giant hop bomb. The Citrus and Piney Hops notes immediately hit you and never really let up. It also has some malt and honey flavors to it, like a slight mead-y taste if you will. This honey taste becomes more prevalent the more the beer warms up. To me, it tasted like..........Victory

The body is similar to Arrogant Bastard, whose carbonation is just as heavy as the body weight itself. So it's a beer you have to sit down and enjoy, this definitely isn't a session beer.

Fans of Surly Wet and IPA fans in general will no doubt fall in love with this beer and for good reason: It's extremely hoppy and sweet yet well balanced.  I'm glad we are finally able to try it out in Minnesota. Here's hoping that sales are strong enough to bring the next batch of Enjoy By to Minnesota because I really enjoyed this. Oh and if you want to keep bringing this to Minnesota just say the magic words on Twitter: #EnjoyBy #MN

Stone Enjoy By IPA - 9.5/10

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