Saturday, March 23, 2013

Review: Tin Roof Juke Joint IPA

This past Wednesday at The Bulldog Tin Roof Brewing Company rolled out their latest brew, the Juke Joint IPA.  First off, I'm thrilled that Tin Roof is going the IPA route now, as it's one style severely lacking from Louisiana craft breweries.  We have the abysmal Jockamo IPA from Abita as well as their new Spring IPA, then the very solid NOLA Hopitoulas to choose from... and that's it as far as regulars go.  Parish will be releasing their Farmhouse IPA before too long, and a Double IPA to follow... NOLA has their Mechahopzilla DIPA, and one of Chafunkta's two first beers will be their Voo Ka Ray Imperial IPA... but we really only have the three basic American-style IPAs to choose from locally.  

Fortunately, that number is now at four, with Tin Roof's Juke Joint, a 7.2% (so still below the Imperial/Double IPA threshold) dry-hopped IPA that should be on tap around town by the time this blog post hits!  So, if you missed it Wednesday, don't worry, there will be plenty more... although you might have missed one of the best weather days this Spring.  I got there a little early and started out with a Bo & Luke from Against The Grain Brewery out of Louisville, Kentucky.  Bo & Luke is a collaboration between Against The Grain and Brouwerij De Molen, a 13% Pappy Van Winkle barrel aged imperial stout that was fantastic.  This post is about the Juke Joint IPA, but if you go to the Bulldog and check that out, this one is worth a pour too!

On to the feature beer... it's hoppy, duh, with a very nice citrus dominated aroma with just a hint of pine.  They used primarily Warrior hops for the bittering (the hops in for the full boil) and then some Cascade, Centennial, Columbus, and Simcoe added in as well.  Simcoe is one of the "golden boy" hops for brewers these days thanks to it's pine-dominated flavor profile and I can tell it's in here but probably not in as much amount as the Cascade and Centennial which give the citrus flavor.  Columbus is known for an herbal character and between the citrus, herbs, and pine there is a very nice hop profile that balances well with the malts used.  

According to Brenton over at The Ale Runner they used 5 different types of malts in this one and it shows on the taste.  They used 2-row pale malt, pilsen, munich, caramel 60, and carapils to create a biscuity sweetness to support the hop flavors.  And indeed there is some of that biscuit feel on the first sip and a malt sweetness at the finish which really works well with the hops and balances out the citrus and pine.  An IPA should always be out of balance toward the hop side, but TOO far and it just turns into a bitter mess... this one definitely is not too far. 

The real question is... would I drink this one again?  And the answer is absolutely yes.  If I'm out around town looking to get a pint and I see the Juke Joint IPA on tap, I would happily order another.  And judging from the reaction of friends at The Bulldog Wednesday night, they all would as well.  Well done, Tin Roof, well done indeed.