Gin Barrel-Aged Hop Henge
Deschutes Brewery

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Beer Geek Stats:
American Imperial IPA
Needs more ratings
3.8 | pDev: 8.42%
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States
Reviews: 3 | Ratings: 5
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this is a cool selection for a gin barrel, i mean, i think i like the sound of any big ipa in a gin barrel, but this one in particular seems to work particularly well, that, or the gin selected has a unique botanical profile that really works well with these specific hops, either way, its nice stuff, a slow sipper sure, but still appropriate for the summer and something i really had fun taking in. deschutes always does a great job with the barrel stuff, but i think the gin is a cool twist. the hops are kind of old school to me, northwestern, high alpha, with some pine and spruce elements, bitter and oily, some weed and some mango too. the malts are nice for support, body, and with the wood, but this really is about the relationship between the juniper and the hops. some dried fruit late, some sweetness, and a graham crackery aspect as well. i do get some of the hot gin alcohol coming through, fusel and burning, but there is enough wood and beer elements to keep it drinking. it warms up well too, so no rush. this is a little unrefined to me, a little rawer than the hop henge is on its own, but a cool beer overall. i think gin barrels seems obvious for big ipa, id love to see more of this kind of thing...

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Photo of tigg924
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap. Pours clear, gold in color with minimal head. Taste is big gin and light pine. Slightly bitter, medium bodied with moderate carbonation. A must for gin lovers. Lots of alcohol taste. I could have a couple.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The similarities in taste that are shared by both Pacific Northwest hops and juniper berries start with citrus and end with pine nearly to a tee. Even the botanical character of gin suggests that a marriage with hop perfumes would be seamless. So the aging of Deschutes legendary Hop Henge imperial IPA should come as an obvious decision.

Pouring a murky honey amber, the hazy beer shows a dense appearance with a creamy crown of froth. Sharp aromas of distilled spirits are clean but piquant as a tingle in the nose comes with the scent of citrus, potpourri, pine and caramel. That aspect of caramel spreads across the tongue with a nutty, toasty, granola-like maltiness.

A gradual release of sweetness keeps the hops and barrel contributions supported even as the ale prefers a drying track. Meanwhile, the hoppy flavors of pink grapefruit, orange peel and lime quickly develops into the quintessential bitterness of pine, grassiness and pepper. Dry oak, bitter herbs and spicy ether teases and taunts the late palate with botanical heat.

Full bodied and finishing bittersweet, the hops and barrel spirits outlast the caramelized malt for a forceful punch of prickling alcohol. The barrel oxidation of caramel malts has dulled the crisp malt character and allowed the more promising nuances of hops to fall off swiftly. The addition of gin character isn't enough to make up for the aged IPA character.

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Gin Barrel-Aged Hop Henge from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 3.8 out of 5 with 5 ratings