The Hop-15 Ale from Port Brewing Company in San Marcos, California pours out orange in color with a good amount of cloud and is topped with a one finger, off-white, foamy head that reduces down to a thin film. On the nose, citrus rind, grapefruit juice, pine and some floral aspects. Pure hops. In the mouth, this is a very complex craft beer. Layers upon layers of hop flavors. Some more bitter than others but this must have a serious malt backbone to support this level of hoppiness. Pine, grapefruit, orange rind, tangerine, violet and a touch of caramel sweetness. Medium bodied. Low to moderate carbonation. Thick sheets of lacing on the glass. Nice oil in the mouthfeel. The finish is long, layered and complex with exceptional bitterness.
Whereas a lot of IPAs seem to fit into one genre, Hop-15 Ale is more like we threw everything and the kitchen sink in and voila! But it is more than that. This is a well thought out craft beer that has layers of flavor that work in harmony continually challenging and exciting your palate. This is the kind of craft beer that puts a smile on a hophead's face. This is a beer to seek out, pop open and revel in its existence. Highly recommended.
22 ounce bottle, 10.0% ABV, Bottled 03/26/12 (date is smudged so that is my best guess)
Beer 105 of 366 for 2012