Our seventh of seven beer-focused posts in honor of Tacoma Drinks WA Beer Week hosted by the Red Hot and Parkway Tavern. At the Parkway this time, we take a look at a rare offering from Fish Brewing: a massive Imperial IPA called the Double Hodgy.
We have spent some quality time writing about beer this week, our faces illuminated by more than just our monitors, fingers constantly missing their intended targets due to the subject of our inquiry. How did Michael Jackson do this for so many years, and so well? If you’ve never read the Shakespearian beer reviews of Michael Jackson (beer god, not pop god) please read them as soon as you’re sober enough to do so.
One article in particular, written by Jackson in 1998 about an IPA offered by London’s famous Fullers brewery, described the style as little more than the remnants of the British-Indian trade relations of times past, concluding a rather impressive article with a declaration that “until something more characterful is on offer“ he’d stick with the Mango Lassi. Something with more character? Too bad he hadn’t been reviewing an IPA from the Pacific NW. The Brits may have created a style out of necessity (the additional hops helped the beer survive the long warm journey to India) but American brewers have turned it into an art. And I like to think that no region has done more for the style than the hop-rich Northwest.
Fish Double Hodgy Double IPA
The Fish Double Hodgy is proof that the style has evolved considerably since the dark days of beer. At an unbelievable $10/pint, this beer is brazenly marketed as something special, and mostly lived up to the hype. The beer is freaking huge. An enormous malt and alcohol base (9.5% ABV) takes front stage to a musty floral hop profile that isn’t notable for its freshness, but seems somehow fitting for the chewy malts. This is a sipper, but not at all difficult to drink. Dangerous.
The Double Hodgy is interesting for its persistence. Like the Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA, this isn’t as overwhelmingly bitter as you might think, although I’m sure the IBUs are through the roof. It has a cloying feel that is comforting, and hard to put down, as each mouthful brings with it a warm swell of malty hops that is missed when washed away. A dangerous combination when the beer costs a Hamilton.
What beautiful words might Michael Jackson have crafted about the Double Hodgy? We’ll never know, but we can assume one thing: it packs way the hell more character than a mango lassi.
*****Fish Brewing fishbrewing.com