I’ve been on this “fresh hopping” kick lately.  Beers made with fresh hops versus dried just seem to be smoother to me.  It’s a characteristic that I think especially works well with IPA’s.  You still get all of the flavor and most of the bitterness that comes with this style of beer, but the more I drink them the more I’m discovering that there is less “bite” to the beer. and that they’re more drinkable.

I just reviewed a fresh hop beer from Great Divide Brewing and I’ve got another from New Belgium that’ll be on a different post.  But this one’s called Hoperation Ivy #20 by Ska Brewing out of Durango, CO.  It’s part of their Local Series.  All the ingredients that went into brewing this tasty, wet hopped IPA came from Colorado.  The hops came from Leroux Creek Farms in Hotchkiss, CO and the malts from the Colorado Malting Company in Alamosa, CO.  I did a bit of research about this beer and found out that Ska has brewed several versions of this beer.  Most of the reviews I found said this was the best of them all.  I’d have to say it’s one of the better IPA’s I’ve had.   It starts out with a great pour; a rich red-orange color and a thick head.  It has an awesome sweet, piney smell to it.  It’s got a high carbonation and has a strong hop profile, but thanks to the wet hopping technique it’s super smooth.  A very good IPA.

Ska Brewing