Beer of the Week: River Horse Hop-A-Lot-Amus

By Iron Chef Leftovers

Despite being one of the most densely populated states in the country, New Jersey beer, is, and I am being nice here, not exactly some of the best in the country. Sure, there are a couple of beers that are worth while, but as a whole, they generally aren’t anything to write home about. One that did come recommended to me was Hop-A-Lot-Amus from River Horse Brewing. I am always skeptical about IPA’s that are not produced on the west coast, let alone double IPAs from a brewery in NJ. I have found them lacking in general compared to the ones you find out west. Given that this was accessible from my trip to NJ, I figured that I would give it a shot. I had this beer in a 12 oz. bottle.

From the River Horse Website:

Style – Double IPA

Malts – Pilsen, Munich, Melanoidin, Caramel 15, Caramel 60, and Carapilsen

Hops – Chinook, Simcoe, Cascade, and Cenntenial

ABV – 8.5%

Continual hopping during boil gives our Double IPA tons of hop flavor and aroma.  Pine and citrus notes are backed by rich malt base.

RH-Hop-A-LotThe beer poured deep orange in color with a creamy tan head. Strong notes of grain with surprisingly subtle citrus show on the nose. The beer starts off with a very mild sweetness on the palate before completely changing direction and quickly moving into a building bitterness with very light floral hints. The bitterness starts slowly and continues to build with great depth until finally fade in in a long finish. The sweetness becomes slightly more noticeable throughout as the beer warms and the beer has bester balance and structure as it warms – it felt out of balance and overly bitter with an alcohol harshness when first opened but it mellowed and smoothed out as the beer progressed. It lacked the deep citrus notes I have come to associate with a west coast IPA, but this beer was surprisingly easy to drink for its ABV and style. It is not going to make me give up west coast IPA’s but it was a nice beer in its own right.

River Horse Hop-A-Lot-Amus comes charging out of the river with a scary 3 Hippopotamus amphibius out of 5.

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