So...I got an e-mail from a friend who will remain nameless, taunting me that Isaac Newton's was tapping a keg of Bell's HopSlam today at 11:30. He was taunting me because I'd mentioned how ridiculous the hype on this beer has become over on BeerAdvocate.
Okay, I think to myself, I'm going to go try some of this stuff. No way I was going to drive all the way to Media, or Norristown, or Limerick to try it, or drive up to Shangy's to buy a $60+ case of it, but Isaac's? A 10 minute jaunt? Sure.
I got my glass, and a cloudy thing it was. Big wafts of sweet hop, pine, citrus, the whole thing blowing up in my nose. Big sweet/bitter mouth, a massive mainline of malt electrified by hops. Yup. Double IPA.
Big deal. Look, guys, this is a good DIPA. No argument there: if you like that kind of thing, this is a good one. But it's just good. It's not awesome, it's not Pliny. Stop squealing and peeing yourself. It's hype, and you're propagating it.
I left Isaac's and bought a case of Nugget Nectar for Cathy, kind of a 'you're back at work, and you're pretty damned great' present for her new job. Besides, she'd finished off a case of SNCA and a case of Hop Wallop since December, I gotta keep her away from my work beer. I had a bit of the bottle she had with dinner. Damn good, real hoppy, great beer. But I'm not twitching about it.
It's funny. The same people who bitch about how much craft beer costs, and how outrageous the prices are, are the ones who will drive all over hell's half-acre to get one particular beer, scream about it on-line, and buy it up whenever they see it. Do you get it? You're the real reason the price is so high. Ironic, ain't it?
No knock on Bell's; love their beers, and this is a good one. But phenomenal, outstanding, extra-terrestrial? No.