Avery Brewing Company is a really great brewery. Really great. Their beers are fairly unique and slightly off-kilter. My father likens them to Dogfish Head, but I don’t think they are that off-center. I’d say they’re more extreme with a purpose than off-center. It’s a nuance thing. They come out with some beers that just knock your socks off. duganA IPA is one of those beers. This beer was designed to be a pure resin hop flavor. They did not let down on that at all. If you are not into hops I would avoid this beer. Hops come in different flavors; some are citrusy, some florally, some piney and earthy. duganA IPA is utilizes the piney and earthy flavors to the max.
The color is a dark gold with an off white head. The aroma was almost florally with a note of caramel and just a hint of pine. The taste was almost pure piney, resiny bitterness. I didn’t get much in the way of malt as the hops are the main focus of this beer. In fact, the hops are so prominent I found this beer to be dry. The initial sip I took was not what I expected it to be based off of the aroma. This beer quite literally took my breathe away; the piney/resiny bitterness was almost overwhelming. As you drink it though you get used to it.
When we did In Pursuit of Hoppiness by Grand Teton we noted that the hops were used to showcase their ability to not be overwhelmingly bitter. In the case of duganA IPA I believe they wanted to showcase the flavors from hops that are piney and resiny. This isn’t a beer that Amber would enjoy as she doesn’t like piney hops. He knows my taste well enough to know when he can review something without me there. I find them to be a change of pace from the usual citrus and florally hops. I’m a citrus and florally kind of girl. Both with hops and in general. Coincidence? I think not. If you are really brave, try this double IPA and be prepared for a shock to your system.