Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung (Ragnarok / Twilight of Gods) IPA

1235028_10101357010122800_818281747_nRating: 4.7/5

Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung (Ragnarok / Twilight of Gods) IPA is 9.5% ABV German Double India Pale Ale brewed mainly with German Hops and Pilsner malt

Life is never dull at Stone, but the last year has been one of the most eventful yet. We threw open the doors to Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Liberty Station, our second decidedly eclectic brewery restaurant, installed in historic former Naval Training Center buildings (including their original mess hall). We outfitted it with a 10-barrel brewhouse, 40 taps serving Stone and guest beers, a huge outdoor garden area, and 650-plus seats. Hey, “small” is for other people. Well, come to think of it, we do have our own version of “small” in our brand-new-as-of-August craft beer-centric Stone bar and eatery in Terminal 2 of San Diego International Airport. At any rate, plan your trip accordingly. And we doubled the size and production capacity of our brewery, built the new Stone Packaging Hall and, oh yeah, found out we’re now the 10th largest craft brewing company in the country. We can hardly believe we fit that all into one paragraph, much less 12 months. Through all that growth, like hop bines rooted in fertile soil (see what we did there?), we kept our feet securely planted on terra firma, remembering that it’s all about the beer—we’d be nothing without it. And so, as we prepare to celebrate 17 years of straining the seams of the ale envelope, we again focus squarely on beer via our annual anniversary offering, while at the same time laying to waste long-held concepts of what German hops can and cannot do, as well as what the world has come to know about San Diego IPAs—thanks much in part to our family of beers.

Inspired by new experimental German hops, our brewing team is celebrating our 17ten Jahrestag by taking palates on an unconventional tour of Deutschland by way of Southern California. In doing so, we used a grain bill comprised exclusively of pilsner malts and German hops with crazy awesome names: Herkules, Hersbrucker, Magnum, Merkur, Opal, Smaragd & Strisselspalt. Dry-hopping with Sterling, a U.S. hop with Saaz parentage, lends a bit of familiarity, but be forewarned, this is a unique beer that takes the IPA—a style we’ve already pushed far beyond its previous limits over the years—to interesting new territory. Schumpeter chose economics; we chose beer. Our creative destruction has been aimed squarely at the previously-held-dear conventions of what beer can and should be. Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA is the latest in a long line of innovations, but nowhere near the last. Not by a long shot.

—Greg Koch & Steve Wagner, Co-Founders, Stone Brewing Co.

Cheers to another year of the Arrogant Bastards of Stone Brewing Co. This year they bring forth a German inspired IPA using mainly German ingredients such German hops and German Pilsner malts. As soon as I opened the beer I was not sure what to expect as when I think German I think sweet sweet banana Bavarian notes or deep caramel toffee from the doppel bocks. I don’t think I have ever had a bad beer from Germany really. Just like the Belgian beers, simply World Class

Aromas are of lemon grass, piney hops, citrus, grapefruit ,interesting tropical notes of banana, strawberry, peach notes, kiwis, mango, pineapple, light caramel, biscuit bread, slight peppery notes, light butterscotch, a bit of floral notes and mint.

The flavors are very hop forward with taste of Grapefruit, grassy, herbal and piney hops, caramel, biscuit bread, pineapple, apricot, peach, banana notes, hints strawberry, kiwi notes, mango, orange preserves or marmalade, piney, garlic, onion, Italian herbs, peppery spices, honey, toffee notes with a slight minty finish.

The aftertaste leaves hints of caramel and tropics but mainly bitter and herbal. A lot going on here to hide the alcohol. Making it refreshing and moderately drinkable

Overall better than last year but under the 15th.. What can I say, I love me that “Black IPA” complexity that hinted chocolate. I did not get the Bavarian Banana Caramel forward IPA I was thinking but that is actually fine. This is still a very good beer and is quite different from what I was expecting. In terms of IPAs, this covers almost every aspect I could think of in IPA flavors. The extent of hop varieties bring this beer to a deep complexity that would be like saying the opposite spectrum of let’s say a “super complex barrel aged quad” but mainly in terms of the hop spectrum. Meaning, of all the different types of complex flavors you can get from different amount of hops, you actually get that complexity here and way more. You got the whole range from piney, to tropical to herbal, to bready to malty, to fruity, to even the spicy and garlic side. An IPA Jack of all trades and more. Maybe something about the Pilsner malts helping it out 😛. Get this while you still can as I do not think they will release this again. It is a very awesome beer. Prost!


Fillmore Fusion by Lagunitas Brewing

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Fillmore Fusion by Lagunitas Brewing is a 5%ABV American Pale Ale

Brewed to honor the 100th Anniversary of the building housing the historic Fillmore Theater in San Francisco. The resulting 5% ABV beer utilizes a new, experimental hop called ADHA 483.

Upon opening this beer, I knew something was quite different about this beer. This was in a good way of course. The hoppy fragrance is quite different adding like an exotic fruit character like a lychee, kumquat, dragon fruit or persimmon like aroma. Some of the grassy and pine notes are subtle and give way through some more tropical fruit flavors such as the grapefruit, mango, oranges, tangerines, caramel, cherries, and like a gummy bear sweetness. The Flavors are awesome. Starts off with typical west coast California grassy, piney and grapefruit hops followed by those exotic fruits like a persimmon, dragon fruit, lychee or kumquat. We also come a nice tangerine, orange, lemon, mango, papaya, pear, slight cherry, apple, herbs and spices. A very crisp and sweet Pale Ale. Refreshing as well. Definitely a summer type of beer with some very interesting flavors. A must try.