Not every IPA is a bitter bomb; certainly, hops play a major role in the brewing of IPAs but there are numerous varieties of hops—some astringent, some mellow, some herbal, some earthy, some floral…etc.—and brewers can fiddle with how many pellets they toss into the brew kettle and how often they do so. There are many variables that affect the flavor of IPA, they’re not all created equal, and they don’t necessarily impart cringing bitterness. One such non-confrontational IPA is Crank Yanker (7% ABV) from Eddyline Brewing.
Color: When poured into a round glass, the dark, orange/amber beer looks like ripe fruit ready to be picked. It’s essentially clear save for a touch of hop haze and the snowy white head sits pristinely atop.
Aroma: Crank Yanker is pleasantly floral and citrusy—like a cross-bred flower garden and orchard. There’s a hint of tropical fruit in there, too.
Taste: Not overtly bitter, Crank Yanker is more earthy, herbal, and peppery. There’s also a flavor not unlike natural, fresh-squeezed orange juice swirling about. The aftertaste leaves little to no lingering bitterness. Drinkers can tip this one back effortlessly; no need to worry about being shocked with intense, aggressive flavors.
Mouthfeel: Starting out with a wet mouthfeel, the hops eventually dry Crank Yanker out. For an IPA, this beer has a fairly thick viscosity; it’s certainly not full-bodied but it isn’t Pilsner-crisp, either.
IPAs are undoubtedly the darlings of the craft beer world but, despite their popularity, there are still those who refuse to drink them. Who can blame them, really? The bite of hops is an acquired taste. However, it’s important to know that “IPA” is not synonymous with “monstrously hopped.” There is a spectrum of bitterness and, for those who don’t want to be rocked out their chair by a hop blast, try Crank Yanker; it’s a fantastic, easy transition into the world of IPA.
Pick up Crank Yanker at most Denver-area liquor stores.