Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ranger Danger!

Well, actually not. Due to a complete lack of creativity, the term "stranger danger" was in my head and stranger rhymes with danger...so, there you have it. Today's sampling is definitely not something you should run away from as if it was some crazed madman that you'd find in some horror flick where common sense doesn't exist. The New Belgium Ranger IPA is a new addition to New Belgium's line of beers and I think their first offering that they have marketed as an IPA. This beer is tasty, but lacks some of the qualities that I have come to expect and love in IPAs. I think if you want to put your toe into the IPA pool, this could be a way to introduce someone to this type of beer.

Appearance - Lighter than a number of IPAs I have seen, but a lovely frothy white head. The bubbles are very inviting, but not so many as to make you think this beer is going to fill ya up. 4.0/5.0

Smell - Like standing in the middle of a forest, there's some definite pine in the aroma of this beer. The hops are nice and pronounced, but not so sharp as to offend (well, I love hops, so not sure that would happen). 4.0/5.0

Taste - The citrus hop flavor is far more blended and subdued than I would have expected. The bitterness is lighter than I usually like, but it's not bad. Like some other reviews I have seen about this beer, I would probably call it a pale ale, rather than an IPA. I expect a lot of boldness in an IPA and this beer just didn't deliver that. - 3.0/5.0

Feel - Smooth, with a great mouth coverage. The aftertaste is a bit sour, but doesn't stick around very much, unlike the hop taste which does hang with you for a while. - 4.0/5.0

Drinkability - As an IPA, probably not. I have a large list of IPAs that I would have on a regular basis. This beer's similarity to a pale ale would put in consideration if I wanted that, but alas - I'll just stick with an IPA. On that note, this isn't a bad beer - just more of a pale ale. 3.0/5.0

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