985: Houblon Chouffe Dobbelen IPA Tripel

Name: Houblon Chouffe Dobbelen IPA Tripel
Brewery: Brasserie d’Achouffe
Country of Origin: Belgium
City & State: Not Applicable
Style: Belgian IPA
Alcohol Content (ABV): 9%
First Brewed: 2006

Tasting Notes
Hazy yellowish beer with a head like whipped egg white. Hops waft in a way that is more European than American; there is also a hint of dried mandarins. On the palate, some citrus, dry hops, tannins, and even a pine. Resiny-oily mouthfeel and medium to well-bodied, dry aftertaste.

Ricky’s Thoughts
Last summer, for my birthday, Sheryl surprised me with a beer making class. It was awesome! We went to Great Fermentations and took a class on making beer. It was awesome! We even got a kit for our first batch. We picked an IPA for our first round. We still have a few bottles left, and hope to make more this summer.

I got excited when a Dobbelen IPA Tripel came up. But it has a much smaller IBU than most American IPAs. However, a MUCH higher ABV. So it can’t be so bad. Plus, it smells like a wet, European IPA. Imagine a wet dog… but only in your glass. (Trust me, it’s a good smell… it just smells wet. Trust me, smell it and you will see .)

It doesn’t look like an IPA in the glass. It almost looks like a wheat beer. I expect dark, deep rust colors from a good IPA. Or maybe I have never had a good IPA. Let’s drink.

A first there is a touch of carbonation, then you are smacked in the face with the bitterness. It might only be 90 IBUs, but man… the mouthfeel and the aftertaste are incredible. THAT is what I expect from an IPA. Whoa, that aftertaste is still there… some thirty seconds later. The head gets in the way at first; it’s thick and foamy. But once you see past that this beer is delicious. I really dig this brew.

There is a certain smoothness at first too. It’s almost like you are drinking a fruit juice or something. I wouldn’t say thick… but close. Regardless, this is a great beer, a wonderful addition to the 1001 Bottles list, and one that I will totally buy again. I wonder if they make this on draft? Bottoms up everyone!

Rating: 4/5

Sheryl’s Thoughts
Well, this beer definitely does not pour out like an IPA.  It looks more like a wheat beer, a golden orangey color with a bit of white head at the top.  It’s bubbly and looks slightly carbonated.  It smells… well, there’s a lot in that smell.  Fruity?  A bit.  Grain, wheat-smelling?  A bit.  I can’t quite describe the smell accurately.  I’m not even sure I can entirely place it.

The head takes a while to go down, so I got a little bit of foam on my first sip.  It’s an interesting form of IPA, not quite typical.  It has a lighter taste, not like the taste of a wheat beer (which is how it kind of looks), but instead tastes more like a regular ale, with the very hoppy aftertaste of an IPA.  I like it okay, but that’s really just it… okay.  I guess I’m a bit disappointed.  I like IPAs, they are one of my favorite kinds of beer.  And to me this doesn’t taste entirely like an IPA, but instead has more of the style of just a normal ale, which I’m not as much a fan of.  I’m not sure I’d buy it again, and if I did, it wouldn’t be my first or even second choice, I’m sure.

Rating: 2/5

984 bottles of beer on the wall…

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