Black Raven Brewing brewed an IPA to celebrate Brouwer’s Cafe 5th Anniversary. This anniversary ale is a pale golden opague brew. Fruity aromas of pineapple, citrus and grapefruit greet you. This Washington beer starts smooth before bitter hops introduce themselves and take up residence for a finish that hangs around. The bittering hops have some complexity here, there is more than just pine boughs pine hanging around!
On my first taste, I thought “meh” I am not sure this is not my style of beer. I even put in an order for a schooner of Black Raven’s Second Sight Strong Scotch to enjoy later. I diligently pulled out the Blackberry to write it up and kept tasting and anniversary beer. By the time my taste glass was half gone, this beer won me over. This beer and I just had to get better acquainted. It took me a couple more sips to recognize and really appreciate the balance and hop profile the Black Raven brewers had created in this IPA. Hops: Nugget, Citra, Mt Hood, Simcoe, Sorachi Ace with an IBU of 60.
The more that I sipped, the more that I appreciated the bright lemony flavors of this brew, from the addition of organic lemon thyme and lemon grass in the secondary. I am also finding that I really enjoy rye based brews. This beer has a barley and rye base. I think it is that combination and the complex hop profile that won me over. I was almost disappointed when my waitress brought me my schooner of scotch ale. This anniversary ale won’t last for long so make sure to get over to Black Raven Brew Pub to grab a pint while you can.