Sunday, 5 February 2012

Odell IPA

Caution: Contains Wine Tangent.

Decent New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc can be a great wine to use as a starting point to get people into tasting wine properly. It usually has loads of accessible tropical fruit flavours, making it very drinkable, and more often than not it has a characteristic gooseberry flavour that can easily be identified when you come back to it. When I run wine classes it therefore becomes a useful tool to get over that barrier of 'all white wine tasting the same' or 'I can never pick out any of these flavours/aromas that people go on about.' This has also lead to it being hugely successful.

Why the wine spiel? Well, it occurred to me that something like this Odell IPA has certain characteristics in common with Kiwi Sauvignon. It's not so extreme as to be unpalatable to your average lager drinker, but still has a kick of hops that once you said to someone 'this is what hops can do' they'd experience that moment of revelation and rush down the street shouting 'eureka!' Well, perhaps not, but hopefully you see my point. Lots of zesty orange on the nose and palate, with tropical fruit and a mouth-watering bitterness (similar to the acidity that's so important in a good white wine) and a lovely smooth, not over-carbonated texture which makes it both mellow and moreish. Good enough to fall in love with? Well it has been suggested (with thanks to Boak & Bailey).

7.0%. £2.99 (355ml) from Beers of Europe.


  1. i think the 5 barrel pale is even more of a gateway beer.

    1. Cool, not tried it - I shall have a go if I see it. I'm sure there are loads out there that could be, the Sierra Nevada summerfest I had the other week would be another one (possibly even more so now I come to think of it!) It was more the wine parallel that occurred to me at the time that got me thinking.