Long Hammer IPA

Image courtesy of Redhook Ale Brewery

My first exposure to a craft brew was probably in 1985 when a friend returned from a trip to Seattle with some Red Hook Ale.  Until then Bass Ale was the most exotic thing on my short list of favorite beers.  Red Hook was clearly the most exciting beer I had ever tasted, and it certainly opened my eyes to the great domestic craft beer movement.  Long Hammer IPA from Redhook Ale Brewery, the legendary Redhook Ale Brewery, is a 6.5% ABV IPA that pours medium gold with a spumescent white head, lots of carbonation and a fair amount of fine suspended particles.  The bouquet is floral and lightly perfumy with a mild pineyness.  Long Hammer is light to medium bodied with a sweet, floral taste, also having a little bubblegum in the finish.  It could use a little more bitterness in the end, but as it is Long Hammer is a dry-hopped IPA that appeals to a large segment of the beer drinking public due to the restraint used in crafting it.  Hoppy enough but not overpowering.  The newer bottles are a very cool shape as well, and the label design really sets the mood and the overall vibe for the Redhook experience.  A true American original.

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