Beer of the Weekend #580: Snow Wit White IPA

It’s time to write a midweek tasting for The Quiet Man. Work has left me burned out and frazzled at the end of the day, and small LV assignments have taxed my patience the last couple weeks, so it is time to treat myself with a Thursday night brew.

Tonight I may have done something I have never done before: buy a variety 12-pack. A back cover ad for Sierra Nevada’s “4-Way IPA” 12-pack on a recent issue of BeerAdvocate intrigued me, mostly because of the black IPA that is included. Black IPA has become one of my favorite styles of beer and I needed to try Sierra Nevada’s version. That, however, will need to wait until tomorrow night because tonight I am starting with the least appealing beer in the pack: Snow Wit White IPA, brewed by the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company of Chico, California.

White IPA. Meh. I’ll try it, of course, but I am far from the biggest fan.

Serving type: 12-ounce bottle. “012314C217:46” is written on the shoulder, but a much easier to decipher “PKGD 01/24/14” is printed on the back label. This beer is a little old for an IPA, but it should still be okay.

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass. The color is cloudy, deep, dishwater gold. Two fingers of white head leaves an even skim and tight ring around the edge.

Smell: Very ripe and spicy. Green banana, sharp clove and pepper, and lemon citrus. “Botanical” is used in the brewery’s description on the bottle, and I would kind of agree with that. There is also spicy Belgian yeast that is a touch funky.

Taste: The mouthfeel is full and bready. The spice is most prominent with sharp pepper and a little clove. The yeast contributes spice and funk. It is very fresh and green, like the tough skin of a green banana. There is also lemon zest and some apple and banana, but they are mostly overshadowed by the yeast spice and funk. The spice lingers on the tongue after each sip. There is also a little grapefruit, but not much. At this point in the beer’s life, it may have faded substantially.

Drinkability: I feared this beer was going to be past its prime, but the flavor is still strong. The label mentions grapefruit, which is not prominent, so perhaps it has fallen out. Nevertheless, it is still good, tasty, and funky stuff.

Fun facts about SWWIPA:

-Style: White IPA.

-Price: Included in a variety 12-pack that cost $15.99 at the New Pioneer Food Co-op in Iowa City.

-Alcohol content: 5.7 percent ABV.

-Food pairings: Included on the beer’s webpage are pairings for cuisine — “Grilled mahi-mahi with Citrus glaze, Shaved fennel and Mandarin salad, Roast Pork with orange glaze” — and cheese — “Butterkase, fresh chèvre, Brie.” Sierra Nevada deserves a pat on the back for thoroughness.

-IBU: 40.

The Quiet Man’s grade: B.

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