Beer of the Weekend #822: Super Hop

The beer of the weekend is an impulse purchase I made while buying tea at the Coralville New Pi: Super Hop, brewed by Stillwater Artisanal Ales, a gypsy brewer based in Maryland.

The color is hazy, light gold. A finger of beige, buttery, bubbly head leaves a skim, a ring around the edge, and a short trail of lacing. Cat piss is noticeable after popping the can and pouring into a pint glass — so much so that my cat came over to investigate. It is pleasant and citrusy up close, but foreshadows astringency. The smell is a blend of mostly fruit and citrus with pineapple, mango, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, orange, muskmelon, some cat piss, light caramel, and some spice. Nothing stands out, though. The flavor features a sharp, zesty bitterness that clings to the taste buds. The sharpness, though, fades as the beer continues to warm, but the bitterness remains. Much like the aroma, the flavor is a blend of many elements: pineapple, some mango, tangerine, lemon zest, orange, a touch of grapefruit, and muskmelon (yuck). A zesty bitterness is what stands out most and dominates the flavor. To be honest, this beer tastes much better straight from the can.

Fun facts about Super Hop:

• Style: The can says “Neo-Tropic India Pale Ale.”

• Price: $11.99 per four-pack of 16-ounce cans at the New Pioneer Food Co-op in Coralville.

• Alcohol content: 6 percent ABV.

• A little Swedish is included on the label:

I assume it’s because Stillwater distributes in Sweden.

• Interestingly, Super Hop is not listed among the beers on the Stillwater website. Google, though, directs me to a beer called Stereo. The label design is similar but it’s not the same beer.

The Quiet Man’s grade: B.

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