15
May
10

Beers of Vancouver, vol. 15

For the past year or so I’ve been stuck in a rut regarding beer, but it’s a warm, soft, comforting sort of rut.  I’ve been drinking mostly Tree’s Hophead IPA and Okanagan Springs’ Black Lager.  But the other day my local liquor store started selling Howe Sound’s Devil’s Elbow IPA, and I figured I’d give it a taste.

A cursory examination of the beers I praise here indicates that I like big flavours and, as far as IPAs go, ridiculous amounts of hops.  By this standard Devil’s Elbow falls somewhat short: it’s hoppy, certainly, and probably hoppy enough to make most of the beer-drinkers on this continent run whimpering back to their Natty Light, but compared to Hophead — or, free markets be praised, to RuinationDevil’s Elbow is a pretty pedestrian IPA.

However.

What Devil’s Elbow lacks in quantity of hops it makes up in purity of flavour.  Most hops-hammer IPAs carry a thick, sweet, almost cloying aftertaste behind them.  Devil’s Elbow hits you in the palate with a slightly lighter hammer, then gets right out of your way with a circumspect, vaguely malty aftertaste that complements the hoppy goodness disconcertingly well.  Drinking Devil’s Elbow is a bit like listening to AC/DC after a steady diet of Godflesh, Slayer, Hatebreed, and Fear Factory.

I doubt it’ll entirely replace the other IPAs in my diet, but it’ll supplement them brilliantly.

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