Lately, I have been trying to buy and sample products that I would never have brought a year ago. This new found ambition to explore craft beer has a recurring theme, English Ales and breweries. After walking past Thornbridge Brewery's, Jaipur, countless times, the provocative statue finally won out and I picked up a bottle at Craft Beer Cellar.
The Jaipur IPA poured a rustic-straw color conjuring images of bucolic Prince Edward Island, Canada. The very light, airy head popped quickly leaving wisps across the surface of the beer. Before pouring, I assumed this beer would have a high level of clarity, however this IPA was more opaque than I anticipated.
The aroma was full of bright citrus notes. The dominating components that I detected were lemon zest and pineapple. Of the two, pineapple was the "class bully" overpowering the lemon zest, which I really enjoyed because pineapple is my favorite fruit. If I smelled this IPA blind, I am certain that I would not have chosen English as its origin, but rather a more well-known hop forward country like the United States or New Zealand.
The brewers at Thornbridge have created a very well crafted beer. The taste begins with punch of lemon zest that quickly flows into the succulent pineapple that was very apparent in the aroma. From here, the beer transitions into a vegetal, almost herbal bitterness, that coats the palate and lingers for an unexpected length of time.
At 5.9% ABV, Jaipur IPA is delicious and highly drinkable. The combination of light carbonation and body allow the flavor components to be savored because one doesn't feel a scrubbing sensation on the palate from the carbonation or feel a heaviness from the body. Although I haven't sampled as many cask ales as I would like, I feel that this IPA would a fantastic choice for "real ale". Its brightness and flavor profile would be enhanced from the residual sugars and fermentation in a firkin making it even more intoxicating. Hopefully, the transatlantic commute doesn't inhibit the brewers from sending cask ales, and maybe, just maybe, they could end up at my local pub.
One can wish....