Wabi-Sabi IPA
Baird Brewing Company / Fishmarket Taproom

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IPA - American
Ranked #6,039
Ranked #38,332
3.54 | pDev: 5.37%
Baird Brewing Company / Fishmarket Taproom
Notes: "In this beautifully nuanced, Japanese esthetic-influenced ale, we marry in the conditioning tank ample dosages of earthy-herbal dry hops (Hersbrucker, Styrian Golding, Santiam) with deft additions of whole leaf Shizuoka green tea."
Reviews: 4 | Ratings: 14 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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Stevedore from Oregon

3.74/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the Harajuki Taproom in Tokyo.

Pours a medium-darker copper body. Fair retention, no lacing. Smells of mild herbal and green tea flavor. Flavour adds a crisp, slight hint of toffee. Mild resin on the backend, giving a bit of fuller body than otherwise. Medium bodied, good carbonation, easy to drink. Tasty beer, and definitely works; I see what they were going for here.

Oct 18, 2015
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doktorhops from Australia

3.23/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Wabi-sabi is a concept I know all too well being a Zen Buddhist [no joke, I am a Zen Buddhist - I bet you thought I was kidding around when I said that... pfft, typical of my readers, I’m not always about humour... maybe 99% of the time I am but I’m in serious mode now]. Wabi-sabi the Japanese aesthetic of “flawed beauty” of which a good example can be found in those Zen paintings of the circle painted with a single brush stroke - the circle is never perfect because beauty is found in the smallest imperfections, just as life is immaterial and impermanent so too is beauty. Heavy stuff? Anyway we have Baird Beer to thank for the new style “JPA” or Japanese Pale Ale with this Wabi-sabi brew that contains green tea and wasabi - should be a treat!

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Presents an intriguing cloudy brown-tinged amber body with a boisterous fluffy white 2 cm head that soon drops down to 1 cm. Baird Beer make note of the fact that their beers are unfiltered and re-fermented in the bottle and I say “yes, bring it!” to that. 8/10.

S: Quite difficult to place the aroma, it’s a bit musty - that would be the yeast - upfront, some earthy tones, a hint of green tea and some nutty notes. Not getting wasabi in the aroma though I suspect they only added a fraction of wasabi to the wort as wasabi can be quite overpowering. 7/10.

T: Flavours are subtle and earthy with characters of musty yeast (in fact the yeast is a bit too dominant in this brew) with light biscuit malt, a hint of pepper spice (from the wasabi I suspect) and not much else... finishes quite dry, leaving the palate with anticipation of the next sip. 6/10.

M: Mid to light bodied with a dense enough carbonation. 7/10.

D: It’s a delicate Japanese beer to be sure, but one that is too delicate - there’s a dynamite flavour combo in the ideal of beer with green tea and wasabi added, however Baird (who are a top-notch brewer) for some reason or another have failed to capture these classic Japanese staple flavours. I did suspect as I was drinking it that maybe the re-fermentation is what killed the flavour with too much yeast - I’ve had the exact same issue with my own homebrew and some Coopers Sparkling Ales which are well past their “best after” dates - yeast in the glass is good 9 times out of 10 but then there is that one bad batch... oh well, ‘A’ for effort. 6/10.

Food match: I imagine a non-yeast-taken-over bottle of this would go perfect with a salmon sashimi bento box.

May 16, 2015
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

3.33/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Simple inspection of the bottle brings about a little wince with sweat-induction, sphincter-tightening and salivating evocation. Wasabi, bitterness, booze and spice are all expected diving into this highly risky ale.

With its rusty, reddish-brown and hazy tone, the beer provides a creamy, lather cap to capture all those spicy aromas just waiting to be explored. Expecting a slap on the face, rather a gently rolling caramel, bread and hops aroma paves the way for taste. Its malt sweetness is fruity, biscuity and quite somber as the spices begin to build.

With the fruit and malty sweetness held in tact, the rise of hops and horseradish spice a somber, providing only a mildly prickling spice that has a unique rye-like zing to it but no more intense than normal beer spiciness could provide. With hops and tea attributes trailing closely behind, a light citrus, pine and steamy bitterness sets the dryness while the beer turns to close.

Sweetness fades, but the biscuity, starchy malt structure remains and gives the finish a malty-dry closure. Balancing bitterness, accompanying ginger spice and herbal teas could all easily be hop-derived while the overall demeanor of the session is of a slightly spicier English pale ale.

Dec 23, 2014
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CrazyDavros from Australia

3.43/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours amber with a large lasting head.
Nose shows apples, gooseberries, pale malt and spicy hops.
Flavours focus on the malt rather than the fruit with soft bready notes.
Nice moderate carbonation.
Agree more with Japan Pale Ale as on the bottle rather than IPA.

Nov 12, 2013
Wabi-Sabi IPA from Baird Brewing Company / Fishmarket Taproom
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 14 ratings