Beaver River I.P.Eh?: Dammed if You Don’t

The spring seasonal from Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company in Vankleek Hill, Ontario pours a gem-like amber colour with a frothy tan head that settles as a long-lasting collar while leaving some spotty lacing behind. Beaver River I.P.Eh? has a bright and rich floral hop aroma with a solid, tangerine-esque citrus tone and a caramel malt backing.

Beaver River I.P.Eh?
This American IPA is One of My Favourite Seasonal Releases

The taste of Beaver River I.P.Eh? is anchored by a toasted grain and malt taste. A citrus-laced bitterness has fruity, floral and pine notes to it and the finish has a slight sourness. This light-bodied American IPA is moderately carbonated and gives off a creamy mouthfeel with a mild oily character. The aftertaste brings another wave of citrus flavour, along with a yeasty, biscuit-like quality.

Church-Key West Coast Pale Ale: Go West Young Man

This American IPA from the Church-Key Brewing Company in Campbellford, Ontario pours a clear golden-amber colour with a medium-sized tan head that’s quite frothy and leaves a nice bit of lace before it settles as a collared film. Church-Key West Coast Pale Ale has a very fresh aroma led by grains and floral hops. There’s an earthy tone, a bright citrus bite and a honey-like sweetness to be found as well.

Church-Key West Coast Pale Ale
West Coast Flavour From an Eastern Ontario Town

Fresh, toasted grains and a yeast-like flavour dominate the taste of Church-Key West Coast Pale Ale before a solid bitterness takes hold. A tangerine-like citrus flavour pops on the tongue and lingers through the finish. The mouthfeel is a bit thin with a moderate carbonation level. There is a light creaminess and a nice oily character on the tongue and the aftertaste is bitter, bready and earthy.

Hop Head IPA: Strikes a Balance

Hop Head IPA from the Tree Brewing Company in Kelowna, British Columbia pours a hazy, rusty amber colour with a sizable and frothy off-white head that settles quickly as a collared film while leaving a generous amount of lace. The aroma of this American IPA is not what I was expecting and a bit muted overall. Lightly caramelized malts have a fresh, grainy backing with a semi-sweet floral tone and a subtle hint of lemon oil and alcohol.

Hop Head IPA
This Well-Balanced IPA Quickly Became a Regular Pickup

Hop Head IPA surprisingly tastes like toasted, chocolate malts up front. A light buttery tone gives way to an earth-like taste and a fairly strong bitterness that really lingers, but remains in control. Again, a hint of lemon or orange oil pokes through in the finish. I find it very well-balanced compared to most of its contemporaries. The beer is rather light-bodied with a medium-heavy carbonation that really pops on the tongue and a distinct oily quality that smooths over the bitterness in the aftertaste and adds to its drinkability.

606 IPA: All Aboard

This West Coast-style American IPA from the Paddock Wood Brewing Company in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan pours a clear, rusty amber colour with a generous light tan-coloured head that takes a good 7-10 minutes to burn off, leaving a healthy amount of lace and a small collar in its wake. 606 IPA smells of caramel-sweetened, toasted malts and has lemon, pineapple and orange citrus notes. A dark floral tone and a hint of earth come through as well.

606 IPA
This IPA is Balanced and Accessible

606 IPA is fairly well-balanced, though a syrupy, dark caramel taste is most prevalent. The beer has a nice, bright tangerine-like citrus tang at first, a dark fruit like cherry taste on the tongue and a crisp, lemon zest note to the finish. It is medium-bodied with a perceivably low carbonation. A long-lasting collar provides a creaminess on the tongue before a suitably oily aftertaste takes over.

Smashbomb Atomic IPA: Exploding with Bitterness

Smashbomb Atomic IPA from The Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery in Barrie, Ontario is rather dark for an American IPA. It pours a rusty amber colour with a moderate-sized tan head that gets retained as a collared film while leaving some nice lacing. This strong beer is very hop-forward with a buttery citrus aroma. A butterscotch-caramel tone provides a sweet backing and a light rose floral accent comes through after warming.

Smashbomb Atomic IPA
This Beer Could not Live up to Its Hype

The of taste Smashbomb Atomic IPA is mostly well-balanced at first, but really goes out of whack. The tangy grapefruit-tangerine citrus bite of the hops is quickly enveloped by a syrupy caramel malt flavour. A tea-like taste appears briefly before a wave of overly strong bitterness seizes up the tongue. It’s very, very bitter overall and I don’t get much in the way of subtlety from this beer, though an oily quality helps ease it down and a long-lasting collar provides a smooth creaminess to the mouthfeel.