Beer Daze: Hazy or Sunny or Both?
Hello all and welcome to Beer Flights of Fancy. For this post I thought I’d look at two local versions of what could be the blockbuster hit of the summer: the North East style IPA. The beers in question are Howe Sound Brewing’s Hazy Daze and Coast Mountain Brewing’s Sunny Daze.
For those with a passing to moderate interest in craft beer, the North East or New England IPA is probably nothing new. The style’s been around for a while now but it seems like more than a few of BC’s breweries are taking a whack at it this season. So if you’re no stranger to the North East danger, plug your eyes for a sentence or two. But if you’re like me and don’t always travel on the tip of the spear when it comes to trends, read on as I lead on. I would describe a North East IPA as a fruit-forward India pale ale with its IBU’s dialed down, especially when compared to its west coast cousins. In addition to its juicy demeanor, this beer is hazy as heck and celebrated for its opacity. An unintended consequence of this translucent look is the eventual overuse of descriptors like ‘Haze’ and it’s rhyming counterpart, ‘Daze’. However, you cannot fault these two fine breweries for riding the Hazy Train and rockin’ Daze in the title of their beer: they’re hardly the only kids on the block with the same sneakers on. In fact, a quick peek at a thesaurus didn’t really give SeaToSkyBeerGuy much in the way of alternatives. Although…
How bad-ass would it be to sip on a NE IPA called the Miasmatic Monster?
The Nebulosity* Curiosity?
Cloudy with a Chance of Fruit Bombs?
Never mind. “Haze” for “Daze” it is.
*Hey Four Winds! This one’s on me: just jam a NE IPA into your Zephyrus Series and call it Nebulous. Or Nebulose. You’re welcome.
To the meat. So first I found a magnificent backdrop to photograph and showcase the colour and cloudiness of the Sunny & Hazy Daze. Then I poured both lovely liquids into these super small glasses. I chose the tiny tulips because it was a work night and I was on story-duty with the kidlets. I didn’t want to pound back the bomber of Hazy D and a full glass of Sunny D for fear of falling asleep in my three year old’s bed (again). Once on display, I quickly noticed that in both cases, the beers were not nearly as hazy as my previous paragraph suggested they should be.
I’m not quite sure of the reason for this. Especially in the case of the Coast Mountain, because I’d had this beer a couple weeks earlier and it was way cloudier (see picture below).
In the case of Howe Sound’s Hazy D, I’d had it before, too. But as it was served in my custom mug I couldn’t really tell if the haze from tonight’s bomber was normal or not.
Anyhoo, as MBW often says while gazing in my direction, “Looks aren’t everything”, so let’s see how these bad boys smell and taste. They both smelled delicious and for some (myself included) that is a big deal. The tropical fruit was fantastic. I’m talking tangerines (in the case of Coast Mountain) and definite pineapple (Howe Sound). The taste was great for both of these beauties too, but I’m going to have to fess up at this point:
Due to extenuating circumstances (taking forever to find a spot with decent lighting to snap a pic and definitely NOT succeeding) my time was running short. The boy needed his butt brushed and his teeth changed and the girl just needed her Daddio. So while I deeply enjoyed both brews, the overall experience was cut short and not nearly as satisfying as when I’d tried them on their own in weeks previous. Look, read the intro to BFFs! I never said I was gonna review beer in the traditional fashion.
So what’s the bottom line? I love North East IPA’s. This style is right up my laneway and I hope they’re here to stay. Howe Sound Brewing and Coast Mountain Brewing both offer superb renditions of said style and you should try them on tap (both) or Bomber (HS) or Growler (CM).
In closing, let me just say this: Cloudy with a Chance of Fruit Bombs? I’ll bet there’s a label being drawn up in the back room of a brewery RIGHT NOW.