Saturday, October 10, 2015

Surly Wet (2015) Review

Name: Surly Wet (2015)
Style: India Pale Ale
ABV: 7.5%
IBUs: 90

It's been two years since we saw the last release of Surly Wet, Surly's annual Wet Hop IPA release. We missed out last year because of the expansion that Surly was undergoing with the construction of their now-open destination brewery. So this year it's back and this time around it's brewed with all Simcoe wet hops.

When I last had this in 2013, I was somewhat disappointed by what I got because it felt very underwhelming for a wet hop IPA. At the time, I defended Surly on the account that there was some hop supply issues that year but still gave it a less-than-desireable score. Based on what I've heard this year, the reaction has been mixed to say the very least. I will be the one (well not really) to make that call.

Appearance - A clear golden color with a fairly high amount of visible carbonation. The head is nice and foamy and there's some pretty decent lacing along the sides of the glass.

Aroma - Fairly pungent citrus aroma with some light herbal notes. I'm getting a fairly solid caramel malt backbone, some light yeastiness and maybe just a hint of piney dankness.

Taste - Citrus and bitter notes upfront followed by some more herbal notes and light dankness, all of which is backed up by a caramel malt backbone, which is more prevalent here than in the nose. Still, it doesn't quite have that totally fresh hop feel to it and I can't help but feel there's a light chalky quality to the overall flavor.

Surly Wet is one of those beers that could really use a hug right about now. I mean, what happened? Back in 2011 & 2012 (which was also brewed with all-Simcoe hops), this beer was awesome and it tasted 100% fresh. Looking back, this year's release has some of the same problems I saw in 2013. The flavor isn't as vibrant as it once was and it doesn't have that totally fresh feel to it; Bear in mind there is some freshness in here but it's severely underwhelming.

I mentioned earlier I defended Surly over the previous Wet offering due to supply issues but I feel this time around there was little heart in making this beer and it somehow manages to come off as even more disappointing than 2013's release. My advice would be to hold off on buying this and just wait for Abrasive to roll out.

Surly Wet (2015) - 7/10

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