Reviewed by Brady White on June 3, 2014 in Gluten-Free Guide
- Brewery: Harvester Brewing
- Origin: Portland, OR, USA
- Rated On: May 30, 2014
- Best Before: N/A
- ABV: 6.0%
- Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature
- Style: American IPA
- Rating: GOOD !
This 650ml bottle pours a murky, medium golden amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, weakly foamy, and bubbly dirty white head, which leaves a bit of sudsy island group lace around the glass as it slowly ebbs away.
It smells of bitter, dank pine and leafy hops, a bit of overripe grapefruit and orange pith, a nutty sweetness, gritty vanilla pudding, and a strange warm spiciness, that I’m pretty sure is the sorghum. The taste is sweet, well I gotta say it – Neapolitan ice cream – vanilla, mild dark fruit, and a chocolate-flecked nuttiness, with a splash of west coast IPA on it, as the pine resin, acrid citrus, and bitter leafiness seem somewhat disjointed from the whole. A smidge of alcohol astringency worms its way in as things warm up. The carbonation is quite average, manifesting as a tightfisted frothiness, the body just on the lee side of medium weight, and a tad too prickly (yup, the hops) to be deemed outright smooth. It finishes off-dry, the nutty and vanilla essences still prominent, amongst a still heady, and musty pine, leafy, and floral hoppiness.
Well, I’ve certainly had proper IPAs with much less interesting and/or enthusiastic malt bills as this one does. The hops strive to be the star here, and they surely have the spunk to go far, babe, but with GF brews, I have to pay more attention to the sweetness counterpoint, because of its stereotypically inherent weakness. So, survey says: everything’s fine, people, Harvester hits another standing triple with their deft combination of malt-adjacent ingredients, and maintains their west coast cred, or whatever, for the aforementioned hops.