Friday, July 24, 2009

Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA Review

Brewery: Dogfish Head Brewery | Beer: 90 Minute IPA
Style: American Double India Pale Ale | ABV: 9.0%
Serving Method: 12 oz. bottle poured into tulip glass

Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPAA while back I reviewed Dogfish Head's best selling beer, their 60 Minute IPA, and gave it an "A" rating. So hopes are high for the next beer from the "Minute" series, 90 Minute IPA, which actually falls into the category of Double IPA. The 90 in the name refers to the fact that hops are added to the wort continuously for 90 minutes during the boil and that the beer clocks in at 90 IBUs and 9.0% ABV.

This was Dogfish's first continuously hopped beer and the one initially brewed using Sam's vibrating football game hopping rig (you can read more about the rig in the review for 60 Minute). The football game is gone now, and Dogfish use a contraption called "Sir-Hops-A-Lot" to keep the hops flowing throughout the boil. Once the beer is conditioning another device called "Me So Hoppy" is used to dry hop the beer.

But that's not the last gadget involved! Some lucky people are able to order their 90 Minute "Randallized," where the beer from the tap is run through a organoleptic hop transducer module (a.k.a. filter) named "Randall the Enamel Animal" that is filled with whole hop cones. The "Enamel" in the name comes from the idea that the beer that flows out is hoppy enough to make you feel that the enamel has been stripped from your teeth. Dogfish sure love their inventions, eh? You can always count on Sam and the rest of the crew to come up with something new.

Well, my bottle of 90 Minute may not be "Randallized," but I'm sure it's still pretty damn good, so let's pop it open.

Appearance: Somewhat hazy rich pumpkin body. A finger and a half of off-white head that leaves good lacing.

Aroma: As you might expect, it smells a lot like 60 Minute with the volume cranked up even further. Hoppy as hell, but backed up with lots of caramel malt and alcohol. The hop profile is of Cascadey grapefruit and pine. Very appetizing.

Taste: Still lots of grassy, earthy, ctirusy and piney hops, but there's a lot more malt in the taste. The sweet caramel malt backbone is very much up to the task of maintaining balance, not an easy feat when there is so much hoppiness. Pleasantly assertive alcohol throughout and a lovely bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and sticky with good carbonation. You can really feel the booze in your throat. Dries in the finish.

Drinkability: It's a sipper for sure, more due to the alcohol content than the flavor profile. Just about average for the style.

Verdict: Compared to most Double IPAs, 90 Minute has a lot more malt than usual, making it much more of a balanced proposition than most. While not my favorite Double IPA, 90 Minute is still very much a standout beer.

Grade: A-


Dustin said...

I've been following your blog and you do some great reviews!!! Just the right amount of info about the brew. Perfect. keep up the good work. Also your photography is nice too. Thanks for sharing this.

Unknown said...

Thanks man, that means the world to me.

Anonymous said...

Ok homie!! Really cool blog dude but you are missing some very essential beers. When you get a chance please try St. Bernardus abt.12, Duchesse de Bourgogne, Hennepin, and Three Philosophers. Trust me these will change your life!!!!!!!!

Dustin said...

Hey Chris. I hope you haven't given up on blogging your beer reviews. Hope to see a "new installment" soon. :-)
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