I’m sure many of us have been out, enjoying some fine brews at an establishment and notice a chalk scrawled menu board that proudly claims that this here IPA has been “dry-hopped” or a bar’s Facebook post the boasts, “Zomg, wet-hopped beer on tap, fresher than your dad on prom night!” Either way, we coo, we ahh, we greedily drink it down and proclaim it to be a superior IPA, but what does any of that mean? Aren’t all hops wet when added to the beer? Do they even have anything to do with each other and why does it matter? Before getting into the whats-a-who of each, we should know that dry and wet are two completely different things in beer as they are in life. Well, not completely, both involve hops, but one is a process while the other is a descriptor.
Quick Take: Nugget Nectar has always been a solid beer over the years and one that I’ve enjoyed whether from frequent growler fills or bottles. A great drinker that is a highlight of the Amber style, but not a hugely complex beer for featuring hops. Nugget Nectar is the beer to bridge the gap between a malty Amber ale and a citrusy IPA, making it an option for the IPA curious to start their journey to full hop head. Balanced and highly drinkable.
Part 2 of my retrospective finds me mentally tumbling through the local bars, breweries and bottle shops that made 2014 the year of beer. With this, I can finally put 2014 to bed and wake up to the beer-filled dawn of 2015. There’s plenty to get to with the release of Hopslam, Founder’s RIS, Nugget Nectar cans and everything else that makes winter drinking great. I also preview some of my plans for the Web site this year, so let’s get to it…
I took a break from mentally traveling back through yesteryear for Part 2 of my 2014 retrospective when I came across some rather intriguing news about Sierra Nevada and a certain hop hunting IPA. While most have focused on the now defunct lawsuit from Lagunitas over font and typography, there is an intriguing beer buried in the controversy. Now, SN is known for playing around with hops. They were the first to use wet hops long ago and you need look no further than the recently released Harvest Wild Hop IPA with Neomexicallious, a hop found growing in the wilds of New Mexico. For these hop dynamos, the announcement of a new IPA should come as no surprise, but the process in making this beer does.
Brewery: Element Brewing
Style: Alt Oktoberfest
Cost: $11.49 (24oz)
Glassware: Pint or Mug
Temp: 45°F (280.35 Kelvin)
Purchased@: Westbrook Maine Bottle Shop
Quick Take: I’m not the biggest Alt fan, but do like a quality Oktoberfest, and this beer pulls in both directions (as you’d imagine). This is one for Alt fans close to the brewery or that have easy access to Element beers. For me, it’s not worth going out of my way to score one, but if I happen to be in Element’s neighborhood with a hankering for beer, I might pick it up.