When we toured the Samuel Adams Boston Brewery with Todd almost two years ago, I took a picture of their 10-gallon nanobrewery setup. The Samuel Adams brewers nicknamed it "nano," the picture I just pulled up on Flickr shows I called it "Experimentation Land."
Whatever the title, I'm getting my first taste of their "nano" efforts. A West Coast-style IPA brewed not for a full on hop strike, but for the nuances of some of their favorite hops. It's a Rebel. A Rebel IPA.
Brewed with Cascade, Simcoe, Centennial, Chinnok, & Amarillo hops, I found Rebel IPA incredibly drinkable, almost sessionable, if not for the 6.5% ABV. The change in hops from overly bitter to intensely flavorable makes this a really different approach to an IPA. As much as I love the style, it seems everyone is trying to take turns in destroying everyone's palates. Not that I don't think that's cool, I'm just glad this Rebel is different. It's a refreshing change.
Currently on draft in and around Boston, Rebel IPA rolls out nationwide in draft in January and then bottles in February. I'm looking forward to it.
Note: Samuel Adams provided me with the Rebel IPA samples. They rock.