Shelf IPA brewers are stepping up their game

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by bubseymour, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. bubseymour

    bubseymour Poo-Bah (2,193) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
    Beer Trader

    I'm as guilty as anyone in the current craft beer community. For the last year or 2, most of my "hoppy" beer consumption has been from either locals on site at the brewery (or crowler take home), or drinking only from the top dogs in the IPA game today (i.e. most of the well know NEIPA makers out there). I've bought some random singles IPA over last couple of months from stores, and have been very pleasantly surprised by the improved quality of some of the new releases of IPAs, DIPA, Pales etc. that can be found in stores. And no, its not all NEIPA sub-style attempts either.

    Anyone else seeing same improving trends as I am?
     
  2. zid

    zid Savant (945) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    On the contrary, I've been really digging Torpedo this year.
     
  3. deadwolfbones

    deadwolfbones Initiate (126) Jun 21, 2014 California

    I've been pleasantly surprised by New Belgium's Hazy Juicy IPA. Better than SN Hazy Little Thing, to my palate, and close to many taproom-only hazy IPAs I've had recently in the LA area. NB hasn't been on my radar for a long time for anything but their one-off releases, so this was a big surprise.

    Only complaint is that the alcohol is a bit too present. Would prefer it at around 6-6.5%, I think.
     
    ESHBG, IPAExpert69 and MistaRyte like this.
  4. DrivinNCryin

    DrivinNCryin Initiate (145) Aug 21, 2017 South Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Was having this same discussion over the weekend. Captain Lawrence (in NY i believe but i get distro here in SC) Powder Dreams cans are fantastic and are sitting on lots of shelves here.
     
  5. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,545) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium Member

    Those beers are listed as Limited Release on the Captain Lawrence website:

    https://www.captainlawrencebrewing.com/limited-release/

    Do you know the specific details of what limited release means? Only available in parts of the Captain Lawrence distribution region? Only available for a short period of time?

    Cheers!
     
  6. zid

    zid Savant (945) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    In this case, "limited release" signals:

    - changing hops
    - 16oz cans
    - harder to come by than the flagships
    - more expensive

    I have no idea about the distribution area.
     
  7. mnrider

    mnrider Crusader (732) May 26, 2009 Connecticut

    i buy all my beer from stores
     
  8. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,545) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium Member

    I checked out the Beer Menus website. The closest place that had this beer available was over 60 miles away from me: on draft in Lancaster, PA. There were a lot of places in New York (NYC) that had this beer listed.

    No canned beers of Powder Dreams in the SEPA area. In other words: not a shelf IPA for me.

    Cheers!
     
  9. DrivinNCryin

    DrivinNCryin Initiate (145) Aug 21, 2017 South Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Yeah--I do know that it is a changing hop NEIPA recipe type. This latest can was Mosaic / citra / powder of some kind.
     
  10. GetMeAnIPA

    GetMeAnIPA Zealot (582) Mar 28, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    You’re doing this craft beer thing all wrong.
     
  11. IPAExpert69

    IPAExpert69 Aspirant (215) Aug 2, 2017 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    This will ring true 10 years from now (I hope).
     
  12. IPAExpert69

    IPAExpert69 Aspirant (215) Aug 2, 2017 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Agree 95%. I dig the boozy taste with this one, really has the kick Hazy Little Thing is missing! But hey, to each their own.
     
    MistaRyte and Lahey like this.
  13. nodder

    nodder Devotee (467) Aug 9, 2013 New York

    There is a wrong way??
     
  14. jcos

    jcos Aspirant (252) Nov 23, 2009 Maryland

    "Shelf IPA" as a term. Sigh.
     
    JrGtr, cronimi, eldoctorador and 13 others like this.
  15. Leebo

    Leebo Initiate (180) Feb 7, 2013 Massachusetts

    99.9 percent of the beers I buy are on the "shelf" Who waits in line? That was so last year.
     
  16. zid

    zid Savant (945) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    and 00.1% of the beers you buy are cases stacked on the floor. :wink:
     
    JrGtr, LA_Hue24, TongoRad and 2 others like this.
  17. GetMeAnIPA

    GetMeAnIPA Zealot (582) Mar 28, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    If you don’t know I can’t tell you.
     
    nodder and LA_Hue24 like this.
  18. Domingo

    Domingo Poo-Bah (2,192) Apr 23, 2005 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    I still do the vast majority of my drinking at breweries, tap rooms, and restaurants. While not "shelf beers" necessarily, I'm able to get IPA's from Comrade, Station 26, Weldwerks, Outer Range, Melvin, and La Cumbre at a wide variety of locations right in the Denver 'burbs. For me, that's mainly burger joints and Old Chicago, That's night and day better than things were 4-5 years ago and I'm not even including stuff from Sierra Nevada, New Belgium, Ballast Point, etc. I'll take it.
     
    cavedave likes this.
  19. eppCOS

    eppCOS Defender (658) Jun 27, 2015 Colorado
    Premium Member

    I know what you're thinking, "Is shelf IPA hazy or not hazy?" Discuss. Just kidding. Please don't.
     
  20. meefmoff

    meefmoff Disciple (364) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Other than Treehouse, which Massachusetts breweries regularly have lines?
     
    tzieser and papposilenus like this.
  21. Hoos78

    Hoos78 Aspirant (278) Mar 3, 2015 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    I think that point of view can be interpreted as a bit dismissive of many good/great IPAs that have been available for a long time. IMO, beers such as Two Hearted, Union Jack, Fresh Squeezed, Lag. IPA, etc. are, and have always been, extremely high-quality IPAs. Hell, I had a Sweetwater IPA yesterday and thought it was one of the tastiest beers I've had in a while.

    Now, many breweries are putting out reasonably good shelf versions of NEIPAs, which is a fairly recent development that one could have missed if he/she has been dedicated to hyper-local brewery only releases. On the flip side, it seems the overall volume of crap beers has increased as well.
     
    LuskusDelph and TongoRad like this.
  22. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,545) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium Member

    I don't live in MA so I genuinely don't know but: there are no lines at Trillium?

    Cheers!
     
  23. meefmoff

    meefmoff Disciple (364) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Not too long after they opened up their second, larger location lines became the exception rather than the rule. Unless there's a special release you're generally fine, though the taproom can definitely get busy on weekends at the new location (the old location doesn't have a taproom and is even easier to deal with, minus the urban parking issue).

    The way that Treehouse manages to still have hour plus long lines every time they scale up is pretty uniquely bonkers, though my understanding is that things are now slowly getting better there too now that people can reliably get a case plus of beer per visit.
     
    tzieser and JackHorzempa like this.
  24. pro100

    pro100 Initiate (160) Oct 12, 2014 California

    Not an ipa but Guinness 200 year Anniversary Stout has been a real nice shelfie for me as of late. No barrel aged or pastry.. just straight classic stout!
     
    Celtics76 and TongoRad like this.
  25. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,294) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    All 2 to 3 thousand of them?
     
    Leebo, GetMeAnIPA and cavedave like this.
  26. MistaRyte

    MistaRyte Devotee (437) Jan 14, 2008 Virginia

    Shelf Beer is SOO 2017... floor beer is where it's at!
     
    Leebo likes this.
  27. IPAExpert69

    IPAExpert69 Aspirant (215) Aug 2, 2017 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Can confirm, went in February and it was much improved. The d-bags that bring 11 members of their family and a U-haul to "trade" aka rip off the brewery and whoever they peddle their stuff to are still prominent unfortunately.
     
    meefmoff likes this.
  28. Izzy_Izumi

    Izzy_Izumi Initiate (142) Aug 3, 2017 California

    Gonna be super spoiled if Beachwood's Mocha Machine makes it as a regular can. Along with their IPA offerings (Citraholic, Amalgamator, LBC), I'm pretty set on "shelf" beers.

    Then again, my area also has Brouwerij West as "shelfies". While it's not a regular beer, almost all their releases make it to my local mart as a few four packs, so I can readily pick some up without the drive.

    Then there's Modern Times' stuff that can sit on shelves.

    Whattatimetobealive.
     
    GetMeAnIPA likes this.
  29. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,545) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium Member

    I take it that it is not a popular selling beer? Is there a reason why?

    Cheers!
     
  30. Izzy_Izumi

    Izzy_Izumi Initiate (142) Aug 3, 2017 California

    I think there's just a lot of it everywhere. Obviously, some cans over others, but I can usually count on seeing some in shelves around me.
     
  31. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Savant (913) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania
    Premium Member

    Craft beer that is produced by larger craft breweries is of better quality than it used to be.

    More at 11.
     
    jcos and TongoRad like this.
  32. tzieser

    tzieser Savant (926) Nov 21, 2006 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    So true. I'm headed back home to see some family this weekend, can't wait to hit up Trillium again. It's always such a breeze to get beer there. The reported lines at Treehouse have scared me away, perhaps this spring or summer I'll muster up the patience to wait ~1 hour for beer. Tilted Barn in RI is also fairly close to where I'm going but again, the reported lines have kept me from making the trip. They make some great beer though.
     
    meefmoff likes this.
  33. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,368) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    All they gotta do is improve freshness. Easier said than done, however.
     
  34. TheBrewsky

    TheBrewsky Crusader (727) Apr 23, 2017 California
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    Torpedo is always a worthy option imo. Really solid and fairly priced.
     
    zid likes this.
  35. Leebo

    Leebo Initiate (180) Feb 7, 2013 Massachusetts

    OK, drive some where and then wait in line. Portland, RI, VT, where ever. My point is I just go to the store, no lines no extra driving. YRMV.
     
    EvenMoreJesus likes this.
  36. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Savant (913) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania
    Premium Member

    Yeah . . . lines at my local grocery store or beer distributor are WAY shorter than the lines at my local breweries PLUS the beer is less expensive and I get more of it. I'm just winning all the way around.
     
    eldoctorador likes this.
  37. eldoctorador

    eldoctorador Zealot (564) Dec 12, 2014 California

    And sometimes the beer even tastes better!
     
    Leebo and EvenMoreJesus like this.