Having spent most of my beer drinking life on the West Coast, I am somewhat underwhelmed by the hoppiness of local beers.
Luckily, I will soon have two new beers to satisfy my unreasonable thirst for hops.
Up first is Sierra Nevada Torpedo. This beer was blogged about recently at The KC Beer Blog
Sierra Nevada is a pioneer in the creation of hoppy beers having, more or less single-handedly, created the classic West Coast pale ale flavor.
The Torpedo device, which is essentially a hopback through which fermenting beer is constantly recirculated, was initially developed for use with the existing Sierra Nevada lineup. However, Sierra Nevada chose to use it to create new beers including Torpedo, the first beer added to the year-round Sierra Nevada lineup in over a decade. This beer will be available later this month.
As if this were not enough to keep a hop lover happy, 2009 will feature the arrival of another new West Coast IPA to the Kansas City area.
Boston Brewing Company holds an annual Longshot Homebrewing Competition, the winners of which have their recipes brewed by the brewery and released in a seasonal six-pack. In 2007, the competition was won by legendary California homebrewery Mike "Tasty" McDole. Tasty's winning entry was a double IPA not so loosely based on the infamous Russian River Brewing Company flagship, Pliny The Elder.
The winning entry could not be included in last year's six-pack, however, because Boston Brewing Company simply could not source the obscene amount of hops needed to brew it. McDole was given the option of accepting a version with hop substitutions or waiting a year to have his recipe brewed as intended. He chose the later option and the beer will be released this year. You can read more about it here, but make sure you look for the six-pack in local stores (Lukas Liquors in Kansas City confirmed that they will carry it) in March.
Prepare to be hopnotized.