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Ommegang's First DIPA

Brewery Ommegang has been in upstate New York for almost 20 years and they have always specialized in Belgian beer styles that all have a distinct spiciness from the yeasts they use. Not all of their beers are for everyone but it's hard to find a bad beer from their tanks. I've put several bottles of the quad, Three Philosophers, in my cellar and all have tasted great once they come out several years later. For almost their entire existence up until the middle of 2015 they stuck to their guns and brewed Belgian style beers and made them well. Then, at last, they jumped on the American craft beer bandwagon and brewed and IPA for the first time called Nirvana. It was a huge hit and became one of the best selling New York IPAs within it's first year of production. Sure, that stat is probably partly due to the fact that they have a larger capacity than many other NY breweries but if it was a bad IPA people wouldn't keep going back to it.

Fast forward a year later and the folks at Ommegang decided to jump into even deeper waters. Anyone who has been into a bar is familiar with IPA and they usually say (think) they don't like them but beer nerds know the real pleasure from hop flavors come out when brewers crank up the volume with more malt and hops into a double IPA. At the start of the summer of 2016 the Great Beyond Double IPA was released to stores and I had the chance to taste it during a sampling session. It's definitely more West Coast than East Coast which isn't a bad thing, unless you're a Trillium or Tree House junkie but I was nothing short of impressed with how it tasted. Maybe I was just expecting it to be another run of the mill DIPA with some grapefruit notes and bitter finish but this beer was citrusy and bright. It's brewed with 6 varieties of hops and rings in at 83 ibus and I'm happy to report that it isn't the palate wrecked as they describe as it is much more easy drinking.

On the one hand you can't be totally shocked that a venerable brewery such as Ommegang made a great beer but on the other I could have seen them mail it in and produce a run of the mill Double IPA just to be one of the cool kids making a double IPA. I'm happy they made a great beer and I'll be drinking it happily all summer long.

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