The ABC Single Hop Series- From Left: Zeus, Horizon, and Simcoe
I stopped into Appalachian Brewing Company to sample their Single Hop Series. Basically, ABC created three IPAs, the only variation between the three being the hops used. I figured this would give me the perfect opportunity to train my palette even further and help it recognize the types of hops used in beers. All three beer looked the same, but the Simcoe IPA definitely had a more pronounced head than the other two.
The first beer was made with Zeus hops. The aroma consists strawberries. The taste is lightly bitter with a bit of burnt caramel. In the background there is also some lemon and pepper. This seemed like it was a run-of-the-mill hop used in making IPAs.
The second beer was made with Horizon hops. This beer was not very aromatic and it was difficult to pick up an hops. The taste is faintly lemon and somewhat plain. The beer has a dry finish. Overall, the taste was more caramel than hops, coming from the base malts used to make the beer. I thought that this was a simple base of hops, but could be used to introduce more people to the IPA style of beer.
The third and final beer was brewed with Simcoe hops. I immediately recognized this type of hops with its grapefruit aroma with sweet sugar undertone. From the beers I have tried, the IPAs using the Simcoe hop have become some of my favorite brews. The beer had a great grapefruit taste that is sweetened with sugar. Overall, this was a delicious brew and I saved some of it for last and wanted to savor each and every drop.