I have mentioned before how much I enjoy New Belgium’s beers. In fact, their sour beer is still one of my top favorite beers of all time. So when I spotted a 22-oz bottle of their Pink Peppercorn IPA at a specialty beer store, I picked it up immediately. It’s from their Trip Series, which means it’s a collaboration beer between New Belgium and Elysian (a well-known Seattle brewery to those of us in the PNW).
Here, this says it all:
I should also mention that, like a good little Oregonian, I love IPAs. So as you can imagine, I’ve been very excited to drink this beer!
Last night, when I finally sat down after doing loads of dishes and laundry, it seemed like the perfect time to crack it open. I usually try to save beers like this for when my husband is home so he can enjoy them too, but the last time we split a beer, I sucked my half down in record time and he left his to languish on the table. It was still there — untouched — the next morning. Alcohol abuse like that is not tolerated in my household.
So I decided I would drink this one alone. Though when he came home early, I did allow him a tiny sip. I’m not a total tyrant. I just get touchy where beer is concerned.
Anyways…On to the tasting!
The color was lovely, a mixture of copper and amber. The pepper stood out amongst the hops and malts both in smell and taste, but in a good way. The spice was mellow and floral, but there was still some IPA-y bitterness in there too. I could also taste a hint of citrus, which helped round things out. The pepper could have been amped up more, but that might have upset the delicate balance. As it was, it was just enough to make this beer unusual, instead of simply a novelty.
Overall, it went down quite smoothly and though I might not be able to drink a lot of these, I could certainly have put down another bottle. In fact, after today’s 8-mile bike ride home in 96 degree heat, I would practically kill to have another one of these in my fridge.
All in all — I would definitely buy this again, in a bottle or on draft (if that ever happens?). It was very much worth it. If you’d like to try a slightly different take on the traditional IPA, this is a good beer to try. It isn’t really a thirst quencher, but it will make you happy.