Beer of the Week: Stoup ISA

By Iron Chef Leftovers

One of the nice things about living in the Northwest is that, despite living in the land of big, hoppy beers, breweries know that there is always a place for a more session version of the IPA – something that has lower alcohol but still has a significant hop profile to keep all of the hopheads happy without killing them with a 7+% ABV beer on a warm day. Stoup Brewing started producing one early in their life, giving drinkers a nice break from the big IPAs.

From the Stoup website:

Silver medal in the Session Ales category at the 2014 Washington Beer Awards ®

ABV: 5%, IBU: 45, Lovibond: 5

A vibrantly golden brew crafted with the Northwest beer drinker in mind. Hopped to satisfy, moderately dry in the finish, and restrained in alcohol content, our India Session Ale is ideal for a long Seattle afternoon of beer consumption with friends. Or alone. Who are we to judge?

untitlasedThe beer pours pale yellow in color with light floral notes on the nose and hints of hops and citrus in the background. the beer starts off on the palate with mild grain before coming in with very light citrus and a pleasant bitterness that keeps building into the finish before fading with more grain with just a hint of citrus peel. Big flavors and nice balance from a session with nice hop bite to keel the hophead in me happy without being palate blowing.

Stoup ISA jams in with a solid set of 3 session players out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Stoup Brewing Citra IPA

By Iron Chef Leftovers

I am back to bouncing all over my beer notes because every once in a while, I have a beer that is on tap at a local brewery and worth seeking out. I love IPA’s and I love single hop IPA’s even more because they really showcase the hop and its flavor profile. Stoup Brewing has a Citra IPA currently on tap that comes in at a reasonable 50 IBU and 5.9% ABV. Since I really do enjoy Citra hops, this one was a must-try.

From the Stoup website:

We like to call this one Sunshine In a Glass … or Sunshine In Your Belly because it won’t stay in that glass long.  Our Citra® IPA is designed to be light and bright in both color and body.  Your first sniff will elicit images of tropical fruit and citrus thanks to a healthy dose of Citra® hops.  Enjoy a pint of this and you might just find yourself gazing skyward, pondering how in the heck sunshine made its way into your glass.

untitlasedThe beer pours hazy golden in color with tinges of orange and a creamy white head. There are significant amounts of orange and orange peel on the nose with light touches of orange juice showing through. The beer starts out with a mild orange juice sweetness coupled with touches of grain before more pronounced IPA character builds in. First, you get hints of piney resin, then burnt orange peel with a bitterness that is mild and pleasant that carries through the finish of the beer without overpowering it. There is more fresh fruit on the finish, combining with the orange peel and pine notes, causing the beer to finish nicely and tricked my mind into looking for orange pulp at the bottom of the glass. This beer is easy to drink with a nice balance and complexity, showing layered flavors and showcasing Citra hops wonderfully.

Stoup Brewing’s Citra IPA goes down to the groves and picks the best 4 oranges out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Stoup T2R Haymaker III IPA

By Iron Chef Leftovers

Back a few months ago, a bunch of breweries got together and decided to each brew an Imperial IPA and then take them on the road. Most were good, a few were great and a couple, well, let’s just say that I won’t be drinking them again. Stoup was one of the breweries that participated in the Road Show with their T2R Haymaker III IPA (say that three times fast).

From the Stoup Website:

ABV: 10.5 IBU: 90 SRM: 6

Hops: Lots of “C” hops (Chinook, Centennial, Cascade, Columbus and some Simcoe for good measure).

Malt bill: Pale, Pils, cara Pils, C15 caramel and a little kettle sugar.

Given our love of science, it should be no surprise that we named our first-ever triple IPA after T2R, a class of bitter receptors on your tongue. We had a little fun with the hopping procedures, Mill hops, mash hops, kettle hops, hop bursting, hop imploding, hop exploding, hop back, dry hops, hop missiles and rockets. We slept on hop pillows the night before the brew. We prayed to the hop gods and even the hop devil, just to cover our bases! Ultimately, we decided to go for balance in the beer. You can put some T2R on your T2Rs at the Stoup tap room and a few select events and locales around town.

untitlasedThe beer pours golden orange in color with a fizzy white head. Strong notes of citrus and candied fruit peel dominate the nose with hints of grain and minimal floral notes showing. The beer starts off slightly sweet before quickly moving into a light bitterness coupled with plenty of citrus and burnt citrus peel. The finish is a touch hot with strong bitter hop and bitter citrus components which linger pleasantly. The alcohol burn, while present, dissipates quickly and enhances the hop bitterness, and completely disappears as you get further into the beer. This is a big and flavorful beer with many complex flavors but it also drinks easily and well balanced, assuming that you love hops.

Stoup  T2R Haymaker III IPA delivers the knockout punch with 4 body blows out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Stoup mk Special Bitter

By Iron Chef Leftovers

untitlasedI have a soft spot in my heart for bitters (both the beer and the flavoring agent in mixed drinks), probably because it is a style of beer that, when it is done well, is deep, complex and enjoyable, but easy drinking at the same time. There seems to be a resurgence of the style in the Northwest and this winter it seems that a good number of breweries were rolling one out, which means that there were lots of them for me to try. Stoup threw their hat in the ring with the mk Special Bitter, which clocked in at 5.3% ABV and 35 IBU.

The beer poured deep amber red in color with significant notes of grain and malt and just a touch of hops and citrus on the nose. The beer starts off dry with just a hint of toffee before quickly moving off into the grains and malt, finishing with just a tough of bitterness and a long slightly sweet malt profile that keeps lingering coupled with a very subtle fruitiness, which become notes of dried fruit as the beer warms. Lightly bittered and hopped, this beer is easy to drink and balanced with enough character to be interesting and leaving you wanting more.

Stoup mk Special Bitter comes in from the cold with 4 neighborhood pubs out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Stoup Brewing Winter Warmer

By Iron Chef Leftovers

untitlasedI both love and hate seasonal beers – I love them because it means that I have something new to look forward to when I go to a brewery and I hate them because when I decide I really like a beer, I know that it will only be there for a limited time. This winter, I went on a winter warmer kick and basically went out of my way to try a bunch of them from various breweries around town. I was happy to see that Stoup made one and was excited to try their version of what is becoming one of my favorite styles. The Stoup version clocks in at 7% ABV and 30 IBU.

The beer pours deep brown in color with hints of amber. Roasted malt dominates with notes of spice and chocolate interspersed. The beer starts out slightly sweet on the initial sip with significant amounts of malt character, followed by a slightly fruity middle of dried cherries and apricots coupled with hints of figs before finishing with a touch of warming alcohol joined with a mild spice (cardamom and cloves) enhanced with more dried fruit in a significantly long finish. The alcohol disappears the further you get into the beer and the sweetness less pronounced. The beer has fine balance and rich character and would be nice next to a fire on a cold winter day.

Stoup Winter Warmer grabs a blanket and a chair and cozies in with 4 roaring fires out of 5.

On a sad note, this is the last review of a beer from my 2013 note book. The book is getting retired to the CSE Archives for posterity. Although you have been reading many reviews from beers that I have had in 2014, this marks the last one that I consumed in 2013. Not bad – this review is making onto the site just shy of 4 months after I actually had the beer.

Beer of the Week: Stoup Brewing Porter

By Iron Chef Leftovers

I feel terrible. With my backlog of beer reviews and that I have generally been putting them on the site in chronological order; this is the first time that I am reviewing a beer by Stoup Brewing. That normally wouldn’t be an issue, but they have been opened for 5 months, I am a member of their founders club and they are the closest brewery to my house – a scant 5 blocks away. While this is long delayed in getting posted, I can assure you this won’t be the last time you see these guys getting a write up in this space. The first beer on tap from Stoup is their Porter.

From the Stoup website:

 ABV: 6.5%, IBU: 45, Lovibond: 34

Rich in color and character, our robust porter conjures up memories of decadent chocolate treats dipped in coffee. Hints of dark chocolate, roasted coffee and light malty sweetness are the result of a complex malt profile including chocolate malt, roasted barley, roasted wheat and roasted rye.

untitlasedThe beer pours jet black with a coffee colored head and pleasant notes of chocolate and malt with hints of coffee and vanilla faintly in the background of the nose. The beer starts out on the palate with light notes of coffee before moving into a very pleasant grain middle and finishing long with strong notes of chocolate and malt with hints of vanilla, coffee and toffee. Balanced and flavorful with enough alcohol to warm you up on a cold day, but not so much as it interferes with the pleasant drinking experience that is the porter. As an added bonus, touches of hop character start to show up on the finish as the beer warms, adding another layer of complexity to the beer.

Stoup Brewing Porter cozy’s up to the fire with a strong 3 warm fires out of 5.