Re-learned the lesson last night that it pays to ask for what you really want. When confronted with a less than appealing beer list at Smith and Wollensky’s I sighed, “I’d really love an IPA…” and the friendly and helpful bartender replied, “Oh! I have just the thing!” And thus, my Latitude 48 Experience was born. (Apparently there had been a Sam Adams event there the night before, and this was the only leftover bottle. Score!)
It poured a strong copper color, and looked and smelled more like a lager than an IPA. The first taste was malt and caramel, with a hint of a bitter citrus, very faint grapefruit at the end. This beer has a nice mouthfeel, and was very easy to drink. I would have had another, if there were anymore to drink there.
There was nothing outstanding about this IPA for me. It’s a fun story (all the hops used are from German, English, and American growing regions all located close to the 48th latitude within the “hop belt” of the Northern Hemisphere.”) and worth trying if you like Sam Adams and you like IPAs. It definitely didn’t have earthy, hoppy notes that I love in IPAs, but would be nice to bring to a summer BBQ where you know people like Sam Adams and would try something new, but not crazy different.
Vital Stats: 12oz bottle served cold in a Sam pint glass. 6.00% ABV
Taste: B+. More malty than my ideal IPA but not bad. Someone who loves Sam Lager would probably love this.
Drinkability: B+. At 6.00% it would be easy to drink a handful of these on a nice day.
Packaging: C+. It is immediately recogniable as a Sam Adams beer. So, A for strong brand identity, D for creativity or engagement.