West Side Belgian-Style IPA - Harriet Brewing
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 86 | Reviews: 29 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by DaveAnderson:
4.65/5 rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
I was out of town when this had its debut at Blue Nile, but sure enough, Al has cornered the market on Harriet for now, and he still has it on tap. Even better, he has a couple of true Belgians of a similar style (La Chouffe and Urthel Hop-It, if I recall correctly), so I can see how it stacks up.
Before I review this beer, it is worth noting that I am often unimpressed with Belgians. I often find them too sweet, and lacking a satisfying finish. I really love American-style IPAs, and am planning to make a Surly Furious my freebie in the happy hour 2-for-1.
This beer is in my wheelhouse. It's evocative of Flying Dog Raging Bitch and Lagunitas A Little Sumpin' Wild, both of which I really enjoy. Maybe we need a new category for these beers -- Belgian-Style American IPA, perhaps? These are fun Belgians for IPA lovers.
Anyway, this is somehow better than the competition, including the La Chouffe and Hot-It I tasted side-by-side. Perhaps it's the freshness -- we're only a mile from the brewery one week after this beer was released, after all. I don't know. Drinkability is very high with this one.
In the end, I ditched the Furious and has a second West Side.
A - Golden straw with little head. Then Al discovered that the CO2 tank needed changing, and the second came on with too much -- very foamy. I think it's unfair for me to draw any conclusions today.
S - So much going on here. All of the fruity, earthy, bready and sweet smells I associate with Belgian yeast, plus the floral, cirtus and pine fragrances common to West Coast hops. Nothing feels out of place here. This is intriguing, and I want to just smell it for a while, an unusual desire for this guy.
T - Just like it smells, and with a surprise. The malt that I didn't notice on the nose is now coming through, and the hop bitterness is perfectly balanced by a faint sweetness.
M - My two pints had vastly different carbonation levels, so I don't think I can rate this accurately.
D - Lightly or highly carbonated, this is a great drinker.
The rookie hits a home run in his first plate appearance. I can't wait to try more beers from Harriet.
Serving type: on-tap
03-01-2011 04:28:39 | More by DaveAnderson
More User Reviews:
West Side Belgian-Style IPA from Harriet Brewing
91 out of 100 based on 86 ratings.