West-Side Belgian-style IPA.
From the website:
Harriet's West Side is an eclectic ale ?brewed to balance the brightest West Coast hops with a prolific Belgian yeast strain. It pours light copper with a vigorous white head. Subtle malt gives way to a fruity, citrusy, and slightly spicy aroma and flavor. Light bodied, effervescent, and seductively approachable.
ABV 6.5%, !BU= 40, OG, 15.5, TG=3?
On tap in a swell Harriet Brewing glass, casts a pale apricot hue, hazy, under a solid creamy-toned head, starts big and slims down, stays solid.
Beautiful citric zest aroma hits right off the bat, high alpha acid bitterness, but not too much, just right. Some lemon and orange, a splash of pine, light and lovely.
Taste: Hoppy bitterness grabs immediately, pins down the palate, delivers a jolt of vibrant hop bitterness, in the famous Pacific Northwest variety (I know there's Cascade and Amarillo in here, forgot the third hop.) It pales just a bit, and then the lush malt, and the unique flavor of the Belgian yeast kicks in, delivers just enough of a funky twist. Spins deliciousness throughout the palate, hoppy flavor never quits, good mouthfeel and texture, light-bodied, with a soft, long, hoppy finish.
In conversations, Jason often compared this to Raging Bitch from Flying Dog, and I definitely get that now, though I'd be curious to compare it to others in this style, like Victory Wild Devil, and the like. I do prefer this approach to the one taken by Belgian brewers, for it feels more like a true Belgian pale ale, in flavor, with the extra touch of American hops up on top.
Wonderfully drinkable, with a consistently delivery of hops throughout the drink. This is a treat for hop-heads, as well as Belgian beer lovers, the best of both worlds. An excellent flagship brew to represent Minneapolis latest micro-brewer, bent on putting out excellent interpretations of Belgian brews.
A friend of my Fiancé gave her a growler of this for me to try. He’s a big fan of Harriet and I’m happy to try anything. Drank from my Ram Brewing oversized pint glass.
Appearance- Pours a nice light orange with hints of yellow around the edges. A decent quarter finger bright white head bubbles away fairly briskly leaving no cap but a decent collar. Not much lacing is left behind.
Smell- Definitely smells way more Belgium than IPA. It’s spicy and full of those lovely yeasty tones. A touch of banana and white pepper with maybe even a tinge of clove. It has a bit of a warm alcohol that really stands out as well. Not overly hoppy smelling as there is a touch of peach fruitiness but that’s about it.
Taste- You’d never really guess this was a Belgium IPA after the smell but you figure it out pretty quick after your first sip. Definitely not overly bitter (and you wouldn’t expect it to be at 40 IBU) as the hops are nice and fruity, borderline citric. Something grapefruit like at first before a light banana thing moves in and whisks this thing off to Belgium land. There is a touch of randomly light sweetness that really isn’t so as the beer finishes bone dry and slightly warming.
Mouthfeel- Nice light carbonation with a super nice feel. The body is spot on along with everything else.
Drinkability- Really digging this beer a lot. It’s got a great balance of IPA (probably more Pale Ale but I’m also numb) and Belgium and thank the lord, it’s not sweet. Very easy drinking, very flavorful and very delicious. A super nice surprise from a local brewery. Gotta love that!
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