Now that autumn is officially here I know you really want a pumpkin beer review. You want one to read while you are drinking your pumpkin spice latte and eating your pumpkin muffin, but sadly this is not a pumpkin beer review.
This is review of a fine, local IPA. The name of this beer is familiar to anyone who has spent time in Cherokee Park – Big Rock is a popular landmark in the park. However, even out-of-towners can appreciate the name of this beer.
I am a sucker for a straightforward IPA. Give me a bitter, hop forward, low booziness IPA and I am in my “beer happy place”. Big Rock IPA from Great Flood Brewing fits the bill – nothing balanced about this one.
The body was well filtered and the color was deep apricot or leather. The head was tan and faded slowly, but it was easily revived with a good swirl of the glass.
The bartender shared that this beer contains Columbus and Cascade hops. Classic American IPA hops – and lots of them! The IBU’s are a massive 97 in this one, so you could say that this is a “big rock” of an IPA.
The aroma is nice and earthy. Tobacco leaves, along with the smell of hay and crunchy fall foliage make me want to dive right in.
The first taste is of flavorful, spicy hops and then it expands to a really grassy delicious bitterness. Not astringent, but it has an impossibly long, lingering bitter finish. There is a subtle bready sweetness in the grains and even a hint of apple, but the hops dominate this beverage. The finish is pretty drying.
It has mild carbonation and a lighter body than expected, especially for a 7% beer. Although it is relatively high in alcohol it is well hidden and it never hinders the drinkability. In the future, I will gladly seek out the Big Rock again.