Beer of the Week: Populuxe Fresh Hop Chinook Pale Ale

By Iron Chef Leftovers

imagesCAAR87MMI will admit that it is a bit odd writing about a fresh hop beer in March, but yes, I still have a backlog of beer notes to get through (it is getting better) so eventually I will catch up and you will be seeing reviews for beers relatively close to their release date. Populuxe did make a couple of fresh hop beers in 2013, one with chinook and one with citra hops. This was the chinook version of the pale which clocked in at 4.8%.

The beer pours light orange in color with a mellow hop character and hints of citrus. The beer starts out on the palate with a nice grain character before quickly becoming more complex and hoppy – orange and grapefruit first make an appearance, giving the beer a slightly sweet character, before heading in a different direction with light notes of citrus peel and spice, medium notes of green hops and a pleasant bitterness. The beer finishing with long notes of pine needles, hops and citrus coupled with a very long mild bitter finish. The beer is layered and complex at the same time being easy drinking and not palate blowing. This was probably my favorite fresh hop beer in 2013.

The Populuxe Fresh Hop Chinook Pale Ale strikes the line and lands a whopping 5 big fish out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Populuxe Solstice Pale Ale

By Iron Chef Leftovers

imagesCAAR87MMToday’s beer takes us in the way back machine 6 months to a warmer and sunnier time in Seattle – June, specifically the summer solstice*. I had forgotten about these notes as they are buried in the middle of my notebook, but Populuxe brewed a pale ale to celebrate the Fremont Solstice Parade, with the beer aptly being named Solstice Pale Ale.

The beer pours hazy yellow in color with light orange and citrus peel on the nose. The initial taste yields light notes of grapefruit followed by mild grassy/resin notes from the hops (they used Chinook and Simcoe) before finishing with a pleasantly light bitterness. The beer has great hop character on both the nose and palate, but that character is restrained wonderfully giving you just small amounts of bitterness and a nice complexity that allows you to appreciate the grain character of the beer and pick up on the subtle flavors the hops are providing. Very easy to drink and a beer you could easily have more than one of, it was clean and refreshing, perfect for a nice summer day.

Populuxe Solstice Pale Ale strips down and rides in with 4 naked bicyclists out of 5.


*if my memory serves, it was cold and foggy the morning of the Solstice, but did become nice in the afternoon.