Wednesday, June 13, 2012

518. Deschutes Chainbreaker White IPA

“The trail to tasty is never safe and gentle.”
from the bottle

Another bike-themed beer, which is, of course, awesome. We love bike-themed beer: see here and here for proof of our lofty claims. And regardless of what Jake Harper tells us, this strikes us more as a revision of the Conflux No. 2 than something brand spanking new, which is really a fantastic thing, because it means there is more of that delicious Deschutes White IPA to be had. But I digress. Our previous run-ins with Deschutes include Conflux No. 2 White IPAThe Abyss, Black Butte Porter XXI, Mirror Pond Pale Ale, Black Butte Porter, Hop Trip, Inversion, and Red Chair IPA.  

Chainbreaker pours a soft yellow & hazy straw with a delicate white head that offers good staying power and decent lacing. The nose is perfume-y, with citrus lemon and grapefruit competing with a slight earthy hop  bitterness, coriander, and a touch of tropical fruit. Flavors open with earthy bitterness mixed with citrus and herbal spiciness; there is a soft, slightly gummy malt character that loudly declares “I’ve got a wheat malt backbone,” but is rounded by a light candy malt sweetness. The middle brings in a slight graininess and huskiness, along with a delicate citrus bitterness, shifting to the clean gentle bitterness in the finish that is is slightly spicy and herbal from the coriander. The body is light, bright, & spritzy with a fresh and punchy character that is simultaneously delicate and restrained. The gentle, celan malt character plays well with the hop, spice, and yeast character of the beer. Much like the
Conflux No. 2, this is a delicious beer, but there are subtle differences. While the Belgian character is still present, this is closer to an IPA than Conflux, which struck me as more saison-like in the delicate nuance. This beer is still delicate, but the sage is gone, replaced with citrus and an increased coriander/herbal spice character that suits the beer well. As well, the hop character is more complete across the beer—more flavor and aroma, and a more nuanced bitterness playing across the beer. The ABV is also appropriately toned down from the 7.3% of Conflux to make this a wee bit easier on the stump-jumpin’ mountain bike racing crowd. Not like they couldn’t handle it, but it is drinkable enough that they’ll want more than one or two.

From the Deschutes website: “Deschutes is taking you into the next beer frontier. Brewed with wheat and pilsner malt; this IPA displays beautiful citrus aromas from Cascade and Citra hops that meld with the esters of Belgian yeast. Think thirst quenching hopped-up wit beer with enough IBUs to warrant the IPA name.”

ABV: 5.6%
IBU: 55
Malt: Pilsner, Wheat, Unmalted Wheat
Hops: Bravo, Citra, Centennial, Cascade
Other: Sweet Orange, Coriander


No comments:

Post a Comment