The Audacity Of Hops | Cambridge Brewing Company

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The Audacity Of HopsThe Audacity Of Hops
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Cambridge Brewing Company
Massachusetts, United States | website

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Belgian Double IPA.

Added by EPICAC on 11-12-2008

BEER STATS
Reviews:
147
Ratings:
617
Avg:
4.04
pDev:
19.06%
 
 
Wants:
33
Gots:
98
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 147 | Ratings: 617
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The world of Belgian fruit and spice collides with American hop flavor and bitterness for a surprisingly well-rounded taste that balances with candied sweetness for not only a profound taste, but smooth one as well.

Glowing with its proud golden hue, the beer is lightly hazed and showcases dispersed streams of light and carbonation very well. Streams of carbonation rise to construct a creamy ivory head. With the character of Belgian and hoppy ales, you bet the head character is sturdy, long lasting and laces the beer impressively with each sip.

Bright and citrusy aromas hedge on the complex hop blend that spans the gamut of citrus and tropical fruit with mild herb, grass and pine notes. Confectioner's candy sweetness allows the hops to have a juicier and riper impact on the nose and paves the way for the fruit esters and yeast spices to spring upon.

Fruity taste extends from citrus hop notes of grapefruit and orange peel. Softer tropical hop notes of pineapple and apricots buffer against pine resins, fresh-cut grass, and herb botanicals. But then a muted ester character of orchard fruits- apples and pears blend into the hops seamlessly; just as the middle palate spices of light clove, coriander, and white pepper extends into alcohol taste and resinous bitterness to close the session.

Medium bodied, but seeming slightly fuller at times with creamy carbonation and residual malt sweetness, the beer rewards the taste buds early on as the weight of the beer seeps into the mouth. But the finish is semi-dry and evenly fades into alcohol warmth and light peppery sensations for a relatively high rate of drinkability.

Where the beer is a justified Belgian-inspired American imperial IPA, it's Belgian character is suppressed and it's Pacific Northwest hop attributes are elevated to the point where if the label hadn't told me that this was a Belgian-type of beer, then I may have missed it and chocked the fruit and spice up to the hops alone.

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Photo of DrDogbeer
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one on tap at Union Brewhouse- quite a treat. Served in a thin tulip glass. Pale yellow color but almost had a neon hue to it, with a huge white head. The barkeeps were having trouble keeping the head in check when pouring it. Smells were dominated by the hops. Some light citrus and minty hop aromas. Taste was the same, at first. Then the belgian yeasty flavors come through. Some light spiciness and pepper come through. Very interesting. Drying mouthfeel but the hops come through again at the end for a bit of bitterness. Good beer, very original.

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Photo of FFreak
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber into Willy glasses and shared on the first warm Vermont day of the year.

A hazy bright golden-orange color with a finger of tight, fluffy, pure-white head that leaves huge lace.

Not a lot in the aroma, but some hints of tropical or stone fruit.

Taste is somewhat sweet with fruity hops, caramel malt, and balanced out by just a slight bit of bitterness and absolutely no boozy or Belgian yeast characteristics.

The mouth was really nice, medium-bodied and refreshing, begs for another sip.

Overall, this definitely comes across more as a pale ale or IPA than a Belgian-style ale, but it is delicious and I would definitely buy it again.

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Photo of Durge
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear copper-amber color with a fair off-white head and tenacious lacing. The aroma offers sweet pine-citrus hops with a touch of piss and vinegar. The lemon edges blend with some skunky caramel. Very nice although I don't detect much of the usual Belgian ideas. The flavor brings a nice blend of caramel-pine and lemon along with a modest clove yeast that just hints at the Belgian theme. This stuff is pretty yeasty with a slightly funky hop. The body is medium with moderate carbonation. The feel is gentle but with a pleasant frothy quality. Although it did not provide the classic Belgian IPA flavors it is none-the-less a very enjoyable concoction. Very much recommended.

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Photo of Sean9689
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap @ CBC. Poured into tulip.

A - Pours mirky golden, white thin cap, sticky lace.

S - Bitter hops, slight malt sweetness, tropical citrus. There's a large amount of hops, more then expected, for a Belgian DIPA. Yum!

T - Tropical citrus sweetness, malts, hoppy bitterness, orange peel. Nice dose of bitter hops and the citrus sweetness works well together and neither takes away from the other.

M - Medium body, oily bitter finish, good carbonation.

O - A wonderful Belgian DIPA that I enjoyed very much so. A nice way to end a wonderful trip on the East Coast. I hope to get back to CBC to try some of their other offerings.

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Photo of shangwang
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Popped open a bottle from the first batch, December 2011. Poured into a Chimay glass.

Great appearance- hazy amber color with a thin finger of bubbly white head that reduced to a thin coating over a few minutes. Lots of dense, tiny bubbles made up the head and it left smooth lacing on the glass. Smelled strongly of citrusy hops and banana, with some grassy notes. The taste hit me hard at first with a dry and bitter hoppiness, but a subtle sweetness quickly followed. Lots of bold character that you would find in a Double IPA. The mouthfeel was chewy and medium in weight, with a stickiness and a lot of carbonation.
Overall, enjoyed this one, and I felt like it was a fun take on an IPA. I tend to think it falls more into the characteristics of a DIPA rather than a Belgian, but it's light and easy to drink, and very tasty.

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Photo of drabmuh
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Thorpe for this tick. At the time of this review, this beer is the #16 beer on the "Top Beers - Belgian IPA" list on beeradvocate.com.

Beer is eyllow with a slight haze, thin wispy white head of small bubbles, some lacing, low carbonation.

Smells exactly like a Belgian IPA, mildly peppery yeast with an earthy hop backbone.

Beer is light in body and sweet on the front with a dryish and mildly bitter finish. The center of the palate is earthy with hops and a little sulfur and mild spiciness from the yeast. Pretty good, I'd have it again.

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Photo of CheezyBlaster
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer all-around. I'm not a huge Belgian IPA fan, but this was interesting.

It's ALL about the hops and the yeast with this one. There isn't much going on in the malt department, at all. The nose is super citrus hoppy: mostly grapefruit and some sharp pine notes. Just a little edge of the funk from the Belgian yeasts, but it's overpowered by the hops.

It tastes as I expected from the nose, but the yeast comes through more. Hoppy hoppy, all grapefruit and bitter citrus pith. No fruity sweetness to the hops at all. The yeast comes through spicy and warm. I enjoy. A touch of a tiny, itty bitty, "grape candy"effervescence dancing in the back ground. Lik-m-aid style, mingled with champagne. Look for it. Trust me. You'll be like: "wtf?"

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Photo of JAFoley
4/5  rDev -1%

A - Cloudy bright amber body with bubbly light tan head. Retention isn't so great but nice lacing.

S - Lots of orange rind and some familiar Belgian notes, like banana

T - The flavors really sing. Bright orange citrus hops upfront followed by tangy citrus Belgian notes. Sweet malts follow at the back and into the aftertaste. No banana notes in the taste

M - Medium body with moderate/high carbonation. Somewhat sticky.

O - Really great brew. I tend to avoid the Belgians, but this is a nice mix that doesn't stray to heavily into the flavors I typically dislike. Will certainly pick this up again.

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Photo of MDDMD
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-hazy golden amber color with a nice white head and good lacing

S-yeasty bread, orange, pine, spices

T-citrus, orange, yeasty bread, hint of coriander and cloves, little sweetness, nice bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, alcohol well-integrated, crisp

O-a nice variation on a Belgian IPA, good flavors

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Photo of u2carew
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A) Golden to bronze in color. Thin, creamy head - moves to the outside edge and presents some nice lacing. Good transparency.
S) Hop aroma liken to Cascade mixed with a slight malty sweetness. The floral notes are pleasant.
T) Good blend of hop bitterness and malty sweetness. At the beginning of the aftertaste there is an unidentifiable earthy "funk" - good but weird.
M) Creamy. Smooth. Medium body.
D) A great IPA... the weird funkiness in the aftertaste might deter me after a pint or two.

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Photo of Amalak
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. It has a pale gold color, it is completely opaque. It has a huge foamy white head and lots of lacing.

S. Very grassy with a hoppy undertone.

T/M. It is a nice hoppy bite, but not overly. It has a grassy undertone. Some fruity undertones with a dark fruit taste. Heavy and full bodied.

O. A beautiful double IPA. A mild bit too sweat, but good overall.

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Photo of oline73
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a standard pint glass.

Pours a clear amber with a golden hue. There is a layer of off white head. The smell is hoppy, but there is a strong Belgian spice note. The taste has a nice balance between sweet, spice, and hops. There is a fruity note, the finish is bitter. Lots of Belgian spice here.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Translucent straw color with a fingerswidth head. Glass bottom retention leaves a ladder of crusty lace in its wake.

Complex and busy aroma consisting of spicy pepper, cantaloupe, mango and freshly vacuumed carpet all laid out on a blanket of wheat cracker malt. A few drifts of sharp pine cut through here and there.

Tastes like it smells: Mango pineapple sorbet and pepper with an herbal theme. Pretty dry. Course mouthfeel not plush and sexy enough to induce images of Belgium. Dry, cracker malt backing.

There seem to be two camps of Belgian IPAs - the traditional ones with intense swampy/herbal characteristics (De Ranke Bitter) and the more American ones with a mix of herbal and citrus hops (Audacity of Hops). I prefer that later.

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Photo of ScarletLady
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow. Had to split a bottle amongst 4 people...share & share alike and drink it from a plastic up. I was really glad for the opportunity. the nose isn't as hoppy as the taste. Soapy, nicely bitter with a hint of salt on the finish. Somewhat creamy and smooth on the tongue. Drank it a room temp to get the most out of it. So complex my tongue is still riddling it out.

Really liked it, too bad it isn't available.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy yellow-orange with a foamy bone head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of citrus zest, tropical fruit, funk, earth, and Belgian yeast aromas. Taste is much the same with tropical fruit, earth, funk, and Belgian yeast flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of earth and hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a nice balance between the citrus and tropical hops and the Belgian yeast.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of portia99
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle (Batch #1, December 2011) poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a glowing orange color tending towards golden with two thick fingers of dense white foam. Shows excellent staying power and fades slowly over several minutes, leaving behind sticky webs of lacing on the glass.

S - Citrusy and grassy up front with some spicy Belgian yeast character. Lots of grapefruit, a bit floral. soft grainy malt base.

T - Firm bitterness up front paired with plenty of grapefruit. The grapefruit maintains its presence from beginning to end, finishing with a fresh squeezed juice bitterness after the swallow. Lightly spicy/peppery in the middle. Mild malty sweetness and graininess underneath the hops. Belgian yeast character is pretty light barely managing to make a presence against the hops.

M - Medium bodied with a crisp and prickly medium/high carbonation. Serious grapefruit juice feel from the intense hop flavors that really leaves lingering flavors of fresh juice well past the swallow.

O - Overall, I'm enjoying this beer. Not much of a Belgian hop character...a bit of estery and spicy aspects, but really subdued. 8% alcohol is really not noticeable...goes down smooth and easy. Intense juicy grapefruit character will likely please some and turn off others, but I like it. Worth giving a try for sure.

 1,319 characters

Photo of Beerenauslese
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear gold, lots of bubbles rising to the surface, supporting a thin veil of foam, with some spotty lacing.

Smells of light malt and earthy hops.

Tastes of fruity and earthy hops, with a good bitterness in the finish.

Light body and dry on the palate. Moderate carbonation.

Loaded with fruity, earthy, and bitter hops.

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Photo of dgilks
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy golden colour with a nice, white head. Good head retention and some lacing.

Rich, dank hop aroma with the citrus and pine combining with some Belgian yeast notes to give an almost musky aroma. Very nice. Quite sweet.

Sweet malt hits first followed by a musky hop and yeast flavour. Nice mandarin and musk. Good bitterness that complements everything else.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Silky.

A delicious beer. A nice balance of IPA and Belgian yeast that works well.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.04/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a glass from a 22oz bottle.

The beer pours a nice hazy bright golden color. There is a nice orangey haze to it. There is also a nice half-inch head that forms.

Aroma is of juicy hops. Delicious tropical fruit notes. Some papaya and some nice passion fruit even. Mango and some pineapple. In the background the notes of Belgian yeast can be perceived. Some nice phenols and chalky fruit sweetness can also be noted.

Flavor is more IPA than Belgian. Strong hop kick starts things off with some nice citrus notes. Some grapefruit and some slight piney notes round out the hops. The nice piney notes go well with the Belgian notes of phenols and some slight spice. This is definitely a DIPA with some slight Belgian notes in my book. It is pretty delicious though. Resinous and nicely hopped up. There is a slight boozy note to it and some good fruit sweetness in the middle of the brew that is rounded out again by some good hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is crisp and with a nice dry finish. Overall this brew was a great surprise. It’s nice and hoppy like a DIPA but it has slight Belgian yeast notes and spices. Well crafted.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.04/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

real solid belgian double ipa here. belgian yeast gives it a beautiful white head on top of a partly clear golden liquid with lots of rising bubbles. looks lighter than it is. the nose is herbal and spicy belgian yeast with big oils west coast style hopping present. i get a little tropical, maybe pineapple, but the rest is resinous pine type hops, which stand out above a rather bland malt base. the flavor is even better, a beautiful marriage of hops and yeast. furthermore, the yeast has completely fermented whatever sugar was left here, and so a dry and bubbly brew results that drinks dangerously easy for its alcohol strength. the hops are huge and bitter all the way through, but also quite vegetal, adding a fleshy fruitiness to this that works with the yeast. an excellent beer overall, one of the better examples of this often underwhelming style. not for the faint of hop!

edit: the bottled version of this, when fresh, is even better than on tap. i get a way more tropical fruit hopping, like fresh pineapple juice even more than the tap. it honestly reminds me of abner from hill farmstead as far as the hop profile, which is about as high a compliment as an ipa can receive from me. its less west coasty, and more refined than we usually associate with that. amazingly easy drinking for its size, and just a beautiful beer all around. top quality belgian ipa, the only one i can think of right now that i could drink every day and not lose enthusiasm for. cambridge is awesome.

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Photo of beenitty
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber from CBC.

Had this one on tap and well and brought some bottles back home to Jersey.

A: Pours clear golden yellow with pearly white head, lacing wasn't great but head stays nicely

S: Spicy, like Belgian IPA, followed by hops, like DIPA, smells nice

T: A bit discordant. Starts with spice and bit of grapefruit and belgian yeast, then follows with a bit of juicy fruits succeeded by the bitter hop bite. Almost tastes like two different beers in a sense.

M: Smooth and creamy. Slight bite

O: Had this one fresh then had it again about two weeks later. The hops died down a bit but the finish was smoother. I think this is a really good beer. The fresher bottle I had I think was complex but the two styles didn't really meld IMO. The older bottle was probably more of a Belgian IPA as opposed to Belgian DIPA.

Definitely A for effort, and I would definitely get this one again.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a couple of tulip glasses.

Pours a clear golden copper, with a sudsy head of bright-white foam. This maintains a rich ½ finger sized flare-up when swirled, which dots the sides of the glass with sticky lace. The aroma smells fresh, leafy, spicy, and citric, with notes of bread and bubblegum working themselves in here as well. Underlying warmth adds a touch of fullness to the nose.

The taste is fresh bitter citrus and pine, which gives this some bite, while pale malt sweetness helps balance this across the back. Bubblegum, soft fruit, and herbal textures cling to those malt flavors a bit, while that combo of hops and yeast finish this dry with notes of pith, resins, and spice. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a slick and smooth feeling to the carbonation that has just enough of a prickle to it to bring out some crispness in the body. There is a good bit of slickness to this which keeps that 8% ABV going down VERY easily.

This was a well done take on a Belgian IPA, with a complex yet balanced profile that kept this smooth and flavorful on the palate despite the occasional assertiveness of the hops. Watch out for this, it's dangerously drinkable for the size.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served from the bottle and poured into a tulip glass. A little old, bottled May 29th 2013.

A dull orange and opaque body, with a good glowing tangerine colored edges. Frothy large white head with good clumping and retention. Grows large off the pour nice and even with a creamy appearance and whipped up top.

Nose has some slight candi sweetnees, but a good hop bitter that dominates and is subtle. Perhaps somewhat faded, but quite chewy leafy and almost minty smelling with a little floral kick.

Palate comes with a large hop bitterness. Minty washing front, with sharp finish on the swallow that lingers on and on. Get out the toothbrush it's warm and minty hot. Chewy palate with a very subdued and hammered down Belgian sweetness. THe heat almost translates into a bretty quality which it's not, but it's a very similar sensation. A little light bodied, but the lack of chewy malt depth provides an easy drinking beer on what could be overly hot.

Real nice take on a Belgian IPA and a large hop presence. Enjoyed my first CBC brew.

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Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I like the name, Cambridge, but better yet, I love the idea of a Belgian DIPA. To beer we can believe in!

An imperial IPA with a bit of age: bottled 10/29/2013, three and a half months before the date of this tasting.

A: Pours a bright gold with a body that’s just bordering on pale, but with enough amber in it to keep it looking like an IPA. It’s crystal-clear, though: you’d be able to see right through it if it wasn’t for the wave of bubbles constantly tearing up through the body. The fizz comes together in an eggshell-colored head the consistency of cappuccino froth, standing at a half-inch of dense retention for the entirety of the drink. Thick, chunky lacing makes quite an impression, too.

S: Quite a refreshing nose, one that’s focused on the interplay of tart Belgian yeast and bright hops. Without a clear distinction of where the esters end and the lupulin begins, the nose swells with rose water, white grape, fresh-cut lemon, dandelion, and a touch of tangerine. The scent of wild yeast – a mild, grassy funk in this case – fills out the spaces in between what ends up being a flowery, Sauvignon blanc-type nose.

T: Starts with a shot, an instant hit of complex, estery yeast: bread crust, dry champagne, and lemongrass with a dash of peppercorn. It’s a brisk, uncompromisingly Belgian start to the palate, and it leads perfectly into hop tastes of lemon-lime, cherry candy, and something floral but indistinguishable (an organic, grassy flavor – wildflower?). The palate skips along as such with a brisk dryness, but as it starts to wind down, the American IPA character kicks in. A caramel malt sweetness winds through, bringing the palate gets to a place of near-syrupiness with notes of caramel cream, malted milk, and some grain husk. Thankfully, it ends up as just a side note to all that’s bright and Belgian in this palate, leading to an aftertaste that’s mostly dry and crisp but slightly weighed down with malt sugar.

M: There’s a slick oiliness that many American DIPAs have that I just can’t get into: that viscosity that comes with hop oils on top of caramel malt residual sugars. This beer has that, but only to a slight degree; otherwise it has a spritz of champagne fizz and a body that can be described as light-to-medium, a combination that’s pretty drinkable.

O: I’ll take a hop bomb any day, but my favorite beers in the world are the ones that can take extreme flavors and achieve balance. This beer does that, blending thick, hoppy DIPA flavors with a flowery, estery Belgian yeast character in satisfying unison. To be honest, I’d rather have less American IPA and more Belgian pale, but that’s just my style preference; for what this is – a Belgian DOUBLE IPA – you can’t really ask for much more. Cheers!

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The Audacity Of Hops from Cambridge Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 147 ratings.
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