Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tuesday Night Tasting - Clown Shoes: Hoppy Feet Black IPA

Clown Shoes - Hoppy Feet Black IPA
Contract Brewed by Mercury Brewing Co. - Ipswich, MA
7% ABV, 1pt 6oz

I picked up this bottle of Clown Shoes Hoppy Feet Black IPA a few weeks ago from Bin Ends in Braintree, MA. I have known about the brewery for a little while, but hadn't had one of their beers. I had also seen their Clementine brew on tap at the Union Brewhouse in Weymouth, and also at Bin Ends. Considering I'm not a big fruit beer guy, but for sure a hop head, I figured the Black IPA might be for me.

As you can see, the beer is dark as hell! It looks very similar to porters, but it has a very slight red tinge to it. However, you have to look at it from a few different angles to find it, or perhaps have a better lit room than my kitchen.

It pours a rich, foamy and fluffy head; although, truth be told I may have been a bit overzealous with my pour, in an attempt to get a good head on the beer. I definitely succeeded, but it could have been helped by the beer itself. Either way, I wasn't disappointed with the thickness of the head, which took a while to subside. The bouquet has a noticeable hop aroma, with a bit of sweetness and citrus tones.

This reminds me of the Schmaltz Brewing Co. labels!

Upon my first sip, it was noticeably bitter. It wasn't so much due to the hops, but rather the malt used in the brewing process. They use roasted and chocolate malts, which help give Hoppy Feet it's rich, black color, and full body. They also use Amarillo and Columbus hops, which according to my palate, took a back seat to the malt; however, they were in no way blind.

The weather is now conducive to heavier beers, such as Clown Shoes Hoppy Feet. The beer has a full mouth feel, without being too heavy. I think it would pair well with heavy stews, or braised meats.

The beer has many similar qualities to that of the Blue Hills Brewery Black Hops, which I reviewed in September (read our review here). So, if you enjoyed that beer, you should also enjoy Clown Shoes Hoppy Feet!


Brian said...

Hoping to try this one on my quest for the best IPA. 21st Amendment and Portsmouth brewery hold the crown so far in my eyes. Stay away from Dogzilla, its a mean Black IPA

Adam said...

This would be far from my top pick in the world of Best IPAs. Wachusett IPA and Mayflower IPA are two of my regional favorites for sure though! The Smuttynose Big A IPA is up there too!