Lagunitas Hop Stoopid is another example of the northern California brewery knowing no bounds when it comes to extreme IPAs. This imperial variation of the west coast style IPA is, well, stupid. The brewmasters turned it up to eleven when doing their hop additions on this 8% abv beer and it shows. Not worrying so much about balance as they are about a heavy dose of flavor, the fruit and pine notes dominate every aspect of this beer, making it either an inspired decision or a completely ignorant choice when deciding what beer to put your hands on tonight. Stoopid or not, it’s delicious.
The beer itself is a honey colored wonder, brimming with tiny bubbles running up the glass without a care in the world, covered with a finger of white foamy head. The smell on this double IPA is one of the ctiriest (is citriest a word?) that exists. Massive notes of grapefruit juice, orange peels, lemon rind, tangerines and pineapples. The flavor is bitter, but in that good way. The hop bitterness is balanced by the hops’ own fruit forward taste of tangerines and ruby red grapefruits. Beyond the fruit quality the industrial dosing of Pacific northwest flowers put your tongue on a trek through the herbaceous red wood forests as pine needles sprout. The base is well formulated to deal with the imbecilic hop dosing, providing a deep caramelly back bone to dance gracefully with the bitterness.
Lagunitas Hop Stoopid is a beer for the IPA obsessed. Even if you just feasted on a hunk of raw garlic and hot sauce, you will still be able to taste the hops in this beer. Pair it with big flavors that it can’t overpower. Super funky bleu cheese spread thick over a buffalo chicken breast sandwich comes to mind. Share a bottle with a friend or just be stupid and drink the entire thing yourself. It might ruin the flavor of any beer that comes after, so consider yourself warned.
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