West Coast IPAs in the Northeast

Discussion in 'US - Northeast' started by HorseheadsHophead, Dec 30, 2021.

  1. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (8,995) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania

    Full Pint Brewing out of the Pittsburgh area has a Chinook IPA called Chinookie. Not sure about its current distribution, but its been in stores in Southeastern PA in the past so maybe NJ. Its currently listed on their website at least.
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  2. skivtjerry

    skivtjerry Defender (603) Mar 10, 2006 Vermont

    It is on the shelves here in VT. And it is a better WCIPA than most made in the West. Double Sunshine fits the bill too, Sip, not so much.
  3. skivtjerry

    skivtjerry Defender (603) Mar 10, 2006 Vermont

    Heady is its own thing - does not fit into any style. I agree with you on Lunch; a lot like RR Blind Pig. Not sure I'd call Torpedo a WCIPA though. Again, doesn't really fit into any style descriptor.
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  4. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (4,248) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Dogfish Head is probably the most obvious maker of WCIPAs in the region.

    Got a four-pack of the Donner’s Pass WCIPA from Human Robot the other week that is very tasty.
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  5. Givemebeer

    Givemebeer Zealot (543) Apr 6, 2013 Vermont

    I'm with you on that. I've seen their 2022 calendar, they'll be doing full distro of hopcelot. Solid beer, but doesn't match up with Chinooker'd, IMO. Cheers.
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  6. rdecker679

    rdecker679 Initiate (31) Oct 8, 2015 Massachusetts

    Ruction, by Medusa out of Hudson MA is a good modern WCIPA. Probably gets a little closer to the original dry hop bite concept of WC than the "modern WC" Maine Lunch/Lawson's/etc.
  7. HorseheadsHophead

    HorseheadsHophead Poo-Bah (2,516) Sep 15, 2014 Colorado

    That's a great IPA!
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  8. PGHPABeerdrinker

    PGHPABeerdrinker Initiate (47) Aug 21, 2018 Pennsylvania

    Ever Grain in PA has been making a nice west coast IPA called Verdosa.
    Here's their description: West Coast style IPA, hopped with Strata and Chinook from the talented growers at Indie Hops. Sticky resin and a complex fruity-pine with a grapefruit finish.
    They brew it every few months, and have begun to distribute it in their distribution footprint. My favorite beer of theirs.
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  9. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,825) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    I never heard about Ever Grain until today (your post).

    I visited the Ever Grain website and Verdosa is not listed (neither on tap or available in cans). Is Verdosa a rotating beer style? Do they distribute their canned beers (or do you have to buy them at the brewery)?

    I did read on the brewery’s website:

    “Joose Juicy New England IPA: Our flagship New England style IPA-medium bodied with a luminous yellow haze, bursting with dank citrus and whiffs of sappy pine. ABV 6.0%.”

    Is Joose Juicy their most popular (i.e., top selling) beer?

  10. VodkaPong87

    VodkaPong87 Aspirant (236) Oct 9, 2020 Connecticut

    There's plenty of old school Vermont style IPAs around. Lawson's is everywhere and I bet NEBCO distributes to a lot of NE stores. I've also picked up several 4-packs from other brewers that were just labeled 'IPA' and they were actually not hazies.
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  11. PGHPABeerdrinker

    PGHPABeerdrinker Initiate (47) Aug 21, 2018 Pennsylvania

    They brew Verdosa every few months. It's sold out in the brewery but available in stores currently. I would say that Joose Juicy is their most popular beer. In my opinion, Verdosa > Joose Juicy, but as you noted, the haze is the craze, lol. I personally prefer the west coast IPAs too. Cheers!
    ETA: Troegs has rotating American IPAs, and their current one is Blizzard of Hops, which is excellent. Hop Knife, Field Study, and First Cut are also good.
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  12. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,825) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    I enjoyed drinking Blizzard of Hops. I posted yesterday in the NBW thread about this beer.

    Oh, I see you just read it.

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  13. hillind

    hillind Aspirant (289) Apr 24, 2010 Pennsylvania

    I believe Hop Knife and First Cut don’t see distribution anymore, and I enjoyed both of them.
  14. PGHPABeerdrinker

    PGHPABeerdrinker Initiate (47) Aug 21, 2018 Pennsylvania

    Yeah, they've been brewery only the past couple of years unfortunately.
    hillind likes this.
  15. pbrian

    pbrian Crusader (752) Feb 8, 2001 Connecticut

    Is it too late to give another plug for Wormtown Be Hoppy? I revisited this weekend and will do so again at much shorter intervals than I have in the past. Great beer.
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  16. Genuine

    Genuine Devotee (478) May 7, 2009 Connecticut

    Be Hoppy is my go-to when I go anywhere and they have that on tap. . It's a solid, hoppy IPA.
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  17. cid71

    cid71 Initiate (146) Mar 2, 2009 New Jersey

    Other Half dropping a WCIPA called Green Flowers per instagram for those who see OH in their market
  18. Jcorn

    Jcorn Disciple (394) Jun 17, 2015 Massachusetts

    For those "in between" IPAs aren't they just called American IPAs or American Pale Ales? That's kind of how I look at it. You have your paint thinner west coast IPAs and then your sweeter than hell New England IPAs and in between you have your regular old American IPAs. Columbus Bodhi, Zombie Dust, Jai Alai, things like that. I live in Boston and have been gravitating back to the WCIPAs and AIPAs as well. Lately I have really been loving Lagunitas IPA again. Nothing beats SNPA on draft either. Be Hoppy is a great example, but I also really like Zero Gravity Conehead lately. When they make it, Resilience Serra is phenomenal. They call it a west coast ipa but its more of a middler to me. A lot of people also like Harpoon IPA, although it isn'y my favorite. Lunch & Peeper from Maine Beer Co, if they weren't so overpriced. And although I never see it in Boston anymore, I used to love Stoneface APA.
  19. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,825) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    What specifically distinguishes a West Coast IPA from a "middler"? Is it a difference in bitterness amount? Is it a difference in appearance? Is it...?

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  20. Amendm

    Amendm Meyvn (1,121) Jun 7, 2018 Rhode Island

    You beat me to it, Be Hoppy is the best bang for for the buck. If you want a NEIPA try Don't Worry, also a good deal.
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  21. Jcorn

    Jcorn Disciple (394) Jun 17, 2015 Massachusetts

    To me personally, the middler has a bit of balance. The piney bitterness of a WCIPA but balanced with the sweet, juiciness of a NEIPA. The WCIPA to me has far less of that 2nd part. Although I think the middler and WCIPA are far closer than the middler is to the NEIPA.

    Nothing to do with appearance.
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  22. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,825) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Not to put words in your mouth but...

    So a "middler" has more of a malt presence while the WCIPA has little in terms of a malt presence?

  23. Jcorn

    Jcorn Disciple (394) Jun 17, 2015 Massachusetts

    i guess?
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  24. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,996) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    I read it as a balance between a piney/bitter hop profile and a fruit/juicy forward hop profile for the “middler”. And a West Coast IPA is dominated by the former.

    But both “styles” have a fair amount of bitterness to them. So a “middler” is closer to a West Coast IPA than it is to a New England IPA. Because a New England IPA has the bitterness dialed way back and is fruit forward dominant in its hop profile.

    @Jcorn do I have that right?
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  25. Jbrews

    Jbrews Disciple (369) Aug 6, 2013 New Hampshire

    Definitely ordering a middler asap

    Sounds like an independent
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  26. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,825) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    I suppose I should set my timer to see when the Brewers Association adds "Middler IPA" to their style guidelines!?! :crazy_face:

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  27. keithmurray

    keithmurray Poo-Bah (1,804) Oct 7, 2009 Connecticut

    [QUOTE="HorseheadsHophead, post: 7423253, member:

    That's because Mortalis is best at making beer for people who don't like beer. *drops mic*[/QUOTE]


    All the beers I've had from them have just been sweet, sickly messes. I don't understand the hype surrounding them. Massively overrated!
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  28. Jcorn

    Jcorn Disciple (394) Jun 17, 2015 Massachusetts

    thats basically it yeah. and thats just how i look at it, probably not official designations. haha
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  29. shuggy

    shuggy Initiate (123) Dec 22, 2006 Pennsylvania

    Ummm...no. DFH is the whole reason there is such a thing referred to as East Coast IPA with their malt mess beers.

    There's a very easy theorem to know if you are getting a west coast ipa if you are east of the Mississippi: Was it made by Fathead's?
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  30. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (4,248) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Northwest hops? Pine and citrus profile? High bitterness? Malt backbone? Seems West Coast to me. You do you tho. :beers:
    sefus12 likes this.
  31. mandercamp

    mandercamp Initiate (49) Jun 1, 2016 Massachusetts

    Widowmaker put out a West Coast-style IPA last month, Green Wizard. It was tasty. Stoneface did one last year that was great, but don't think they've done it since. Just picked up Mast Landing's Long Distance Runner, but haven't tried it yet.
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  32. mandercamp

    mandercamp Initiate (49) Jun 1, 2016 Massachusetts

    I miss Hop Knife....
  33. Jcorn

    Jcorn Disciple (394) Jun 17, 2015 Massachusetts

    Another beer i recently discovered that I am loving is Palm Sway from Coronado. So balanced and enjoyable. Revive this thread! I am not done with WCIPAs or the middlers.
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  34. mandercamp

    mandercamp Initiate (49) Jun 1, 2016 Massachusetts

    Got the Sierra Nevada hoppy sampler pack last week and finally tried the Atomic Torpedo last night. That's a good one. Somehow 8.2%, but would not know it.
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  35. jonphisher

    jonphisher Poo-Bah (1,526) Aug 9, 2015 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    There should be single 19.2 oz cans around soon. I haven't seen them show up in NJ yet but I know one of our local distributors added them as new product. Maybe you'll have the chance to get them in MASS as well.
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  36. sethmeister

    sethmeister Defender (681) Feb 21, 2007 New Hampshire

    I really miss Green Flash West Coast IPA. That was my go to before they pulled distribution here.
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  37. Jcorn

    Jcorn Disciple (394) Jun 17, 2015 Massachusetts

    This thread died off but I am reviving it. Picked up some Lizard King from Pipeworks. It had been a while since I had it but damn I love this beer. Not exactly west coast, but nice middle of the road American pale ale. And at 6% it doesn't crush me after having 2-3. If this was available here in 12 packs of 12 oz cans I would buy it fairly often.
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  38. mrmattosgood

    mrmattosgood Aspirant (289) Nov 6, 2010 Canada (BC)

    Im fascinated by the desire for more West Coast IPAs. For me, I wonder if people would buy them if brewers out this way brewed them. They would, right? I guess this is to say I don’t know why WCIPA isn’t really an option anywhere. They wouldn’t sell worse than the obligatory lager breweries out on.

    I have a revigorated interest in the style after having a couple great ones recently in California.
    HorseheadsHophead likes this.
  39. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,825) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    I listened to a recent podcast with Brett Taylor of Wild East Brewing (Brooklyn) where it is discussed that his West Coast style IPA is his most popular selling IPA type. He does produce Juicy/Hazy IPAs as well. It is perhaps even more remarkable in that Wild East is very close to Other Half brewing. Maybe some of the Other Half 'regulars' visit Wild East to take a break from drinking hazies!?!

    sefus12 likes this.
  40. jonphisher

    jonphisher Poo-Bah (1,526) Aug 9, 2015 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Those are the only hoppy beers I do buy still, but I may be in the minority on this one.

    I have probably mentioned many times but if you are ever in NJ Cape May's IPA, their flagship is a west coast IPA, and closer to home NJ is Double Nickels IPA and Tonewood usually brews one every now and then. Another local smaller brewery, Slack Tide's flagship IPA (Angry Osprey) is also west coast and pretty good. I know you travel for work/beer so I wanted to throw in as many locals as I could :slight_smile::beers:

    My biggest issue with most attempts of "west coast" that I have tried from the locals not mentioned above is they tend to fall short of the clean bright bitterness that the likes of Stone, Firestone, etc. accomplish. I've had many just feel soft on the palette and not quite as clean and dry as, insert long standing IPA. Some of them also can't resist adding one or two newer hops in there, that to me instantly veer these beers away from what I want them to taste like.