The Kernel - India Pale Ale Double SCCANS - 8.9% (330ml)
"We’ve not brewed a Double IPA since 2018. The one before was 2015. Long gaps between, which perhaps indicates how we enjoy our Double IPAs – rarely, but intensely. This batch fits that profile. Our profile. The world and range and breadth of IPAs and Double IPAs has changed much in the intervening years. Evolution. Which necessitates a certain explanation of things that have stayed the same. This Double IPA has remained close in recipe and intention to our previous Double IPAs. In the modern beer vernacular we’ve seen beers of this style now termed ‘west coast’, ‘old school’ or even ‘classic’. Badges we wear with pride, but not ones we use in the brewery. Our vision of an IPA has different roots (to us at least). But in any case, to be clear (pun intended), this is not a hazy, juicy, NEIPA. The effect of this beer round the brewery has been quite revelatory – many a Proustian moment of reconnection to an old memory of lost beers, of IPAs as they maybe once were, of friends found and connections made. For one of the team the previous iteration of this beer (IPA Double SCCANS of 2012) was the first beer of ours they’d ever tried. But the beer carries this weight of history lightly. It is very much of the now, and is not bogged down by history. How a brewery configures the drinkability of its beers is always one of the most important questions, and it is the starting point for us almost especially in brewing a Double IPA. So we’ve tried to make this super clean, really lean, dry, bitter, but all integrating towards where we would like the balance to be. Of course it is fruity and hop forward also, but again in balance. This is most apparent in the aroma, which is citrus, stone fruit and the touch of dankness. Columbus and Simcoe most prevalent here, as they also have become signifiers of the west coast style. The flavour pivots towards marmalade / oranges / then pine, citrus peel / citrus pith into bitterness. The body is super light, dry, clean, clear (Californian Ale Yeast). Carbonation a touch higher than usual in our beers, to keep things light. The point of balance that this beer hits is (unintentionally) not far removed from that of a Tripel – a certain honeyed slight sweetness between the dryness of a beer and a high alcohol content which, when matched appropriately, gives an amazing smoothness to its drinking, a very deceptive smoothness. This point remains offset by the fruit character of the hops on one side, and the bitterness of the hops on the other. Which all work together constructing the drinkability we feel appropriate / desirable for a style like this. But we encourage folks to keep focus on the fact that this drinkability is deceptive. Deliciously so. "