I remember my first sip of IPA. I had just moved to San Diego and I had never tried a hoppy beer. John’s favorite beer at the time was Stone’s IPA and it was with him that I tried it for the first time. He told me what IPA meant and the whole story of how hops were added in the beer in order to allow the beer to make the long journey from England to India. I remember tasting the bitterness of the hops and grimacing in disapproval. People drink this for enjoyment?
Fast forward five years and I am officially a hop lover. I’ve learned to differentiate styles and flavors in beer. It’s not surprising that I’m a beer fan since we live in America’s Beer Capital – however, personally I’ve had a really cool beer journey. From not being a beer drinker (ever!) to living on 30th street (home of so many breweries), to going back home to Mexico and noticing how the craft beer movement is catching up down there… so awesome. I’m a little bit of a snob but not in a negative pretentious way, if that makes any sense.. I know that craft beer tastes better if it is poured in the proper glass so I rarely drink from the bottle anymore, yet I can still sip on Pacifico’s on the beach on a warm day. It’s just so neat to learn and understand a beverage. What goes into it, the passion behind the brewers who make it, the combination of ingredients…All great things take time and effort and I find value in the art of crafting beer.
Here are my 5 favorite IPA’s right now – all so delicious!
1. Insurgente La Lupulosa – American IPA – 5 Hops – Fruity – Malty – Hints of Caramel – Made in Mexico (YES!).
2. Modern Times Booming Rollers – American IPA – Citrus – Tropical – Refreshing – “Light” Bitterness.
3. Pizza Port Lono – Mango IPA – Silky – Golden – Juicy – Well Balanced – Robust – You can actually taste the M A N G O!
4. Alpine Nelson – Golden Rye IPA – New Zealand Hops – European Rye – Malty Flavor – Dry Hopped.
5. Stone Japanese Green Tea Collaboration – Herbal & Hoppy – Bitter Finish – Light – Dry – Grassy.