thornecb (5321) - Marblehead, Massachusetts, USA - JUN 15, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours deep amber into a tulip. Bright white head with medium retention recedes to skim surface. Sweet grapefruit, tropical fruit and Belgian yeast aromas. Medium bodied with upfront sweet mango and pineapple turning to grapefruit and resin in the lasting finish.
FlacoAlto (4127) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - JUN 15, 2010
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sampled on tap April 2010 @ ChurchKey, Washington DC,br>
In the dim light the beer shows a brilliantly clear, red-copper hued body that is topped by a wispy pale colored head. The beer is quite hoppy smelling, which mixes well with fermentation derived spiciness and phenols. A herbal, somewhat hay-like and definitely tropical fruit character forms a backdrop to the up front aromatics. The spiciness contributes aromas of clove, pepper and ginger and as the beer warms the hops contribute more pine-like aromatics.
The flavor is quite spicy as it first hits my mouth, but there is also quite a bit of fruit character here as well. This is very herbal tasting with a substantial bitterness and lots of big pine like flavors. The American hops contribute expressive flavors of lychee, kumquat and tangelo just underneath the herbal notes. The finish has some peppery alcohol, ginger flavors and phenolic notes that lean more towards turpenes than the typical clove notes. The hops are actually heavy enough that they drown out the fermentation character (I have a feeling that the fermentation character changes the emphasis of the hops here though), and I definitely like this part of this beer.
TEJA (2088) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - JUN 15, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draught at Sorbon, Stockholm.
Beige fluffu lasting head. The beer is a litle clowdy and has a nice orange amber color. Big hop roma with some citrus but also other hop related aromas. The belgian aroma comes after some time when the beer gets warmer together with some caramell malts. The taste is initially dominated by the hops and a medium bitterness. After the beer gets a litle warmer one also detects a small malt taste.
popery (1867) - San Francisco, California, USA - JUN 14, 2010
2.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
I had high hopes for this one but came away fairly disappointed. It looks nice - amber-orange transparent liquid with a mess of fine white bubble on top. The aroma is pretty good - orangey/floral/cat piss hops, clean wood, honeyed malt and light Belgian earth. It’s actually a tad boring for the style, to be honest. The taste is just disappointing. There’s a lot of bland bitterness from both hops and wood. I’ve never much cared for Amarillo hops, so that could be to blame, but this beer just doesn’t have much going on. The more delicate hop notes have faded, the wood doesn’t provide much interest and the yeast is understated. For the style, it’s harsh on the palate and drinkability is poor.
ShawnMalloy (130) - Auburn, Massachusetts, USA - JUN 14, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours clear orange. Sweet scent and alcoho aromasl. Taste of bubblegum coats a generous hop bitterness. Best thing Flying Dog has released since Gonzo.
Chad9976 (1609) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - JUN 14, 2010
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
To celebrate their 20th anniversary, the Flying Dog brewery out of Maryland created Raging Btch - a "Belgian-style" India Pale Ale. Usually, I raise an eyebrow when an American brewery makes a point of saying their beer is "Belgian-style" since I find it to be a marketing term. However, Flying Dog has a good reputation so I’m inclined to believe they can pull off the "Belgian-style" thing rather well. Not that Raging Btch IPA is a beer that reminds me of monks and old world breweries, but it is a wholly original beer in its own right.
APPEARANCE AND AROMA
I poured a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. The appearance is what I like to see in an IPA: bright orange/light brown in color; clear and effervescent. It produces a generous layer of frothy, off-white head which leaves generous lacing on the glass all the way down and never completely evaporates.
The aroma is quite interesting for an IPA. It’s slightly floral with a distinct scent of non-citrus fruit like pear or apricot. There’s a touch of dryness in the nose as well, similar to Belgian beers but not nearly as strong.
I’ve been a huge fan of the IPA style for years and am always excited to try beers that offer something new. Raging Btch is just such a beer as it has the basic building blocks of a quality American IPA, but it’s the fine details that make it so different.
It’s rare I use the word fruity to describe a beer of this style, but that’s an accurate assessment here. Immediately my palate is greeted with a sweet, fruity, almost juicy taste of pear, apricot or green apple. The hops bite back with a dry, almost powdery bitterness. I suppose this is the Belgian aspect of the beer, although I found it rather one-dimensional whereas authentic Belgian brews tend to be a mélange of peppery spices.
Overall, these flavors are an interesting variation of the floral hop palette found in many stronger American IPAs. There’s a touch a citrus as well, which makes the taste slightly refreshing as it crosses the tongue, but the dry bitterness of the aftertaste overshadows it. I think Raging Btch could’ve been a perfect beer had the finish been moister, but as it stand it’s satisfying.
I drank this beer with two friends and we each had different perspectives on the drinkability of Raging Btch. We all agreed it is indeed a full-bodied beer, but had different takes on the overt bitterness. I thought the hops lingered just enough, but my friends thought they wore out their welcome quickly. We also found the dry palate made the beer taste rather warm even straight out of the fridge.
However, we all agreed that the beer doesn’t taste or feel as potent as its 8.3% ABV would seem to suggest. It would actually pair quite well with a spicy meal or salty snacks, although I think the average drinker might become a little fatigued after two servings.
I’ll admit I went into Flying Dog Raging Btch IPA with reservations, but I’m also happy to report this is most definitely not a gimmicky beer by any means. I probably wouldn’t call its "Belgian-style" self-description entirely accurate, but I do like its originality and craftiness.
NOTE: watch the video version of this review at:
troopie (2290) - Munchen an der Willamette, Oregon, USA - JUN 13, 2010
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Wonderful! Clear orange with lasting thick white head. Full aroma of sweet orange and herb. Full mouthed flavour, citrus, and some sweetness. Lasting hop finish. Yet this is well balanced, and not a mere hop bomb.
DocLock (9365) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 13, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle from Smith’s. Pours hazy dark straw with off white clingy head. Nose is funky yeasty hopcitrus, pale malt, some funk. Tastes complex, hopcitric, with some yeasty funky esters and a smooth finish. This one surprised me with its greatness.
ultor (3) - ITALY - JUN 13, 2010 does not count
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Golden amber with off white head. Aroma is fully hoppy: pine, citrus and resin. Taste begins sweet and spicy, like a good Belgian Ale, because of its yeast; then becomes fruity, hoppy with notes of citrus and fruits. The final is hop-dominated: dry and bitter. Medium Body. Good balance between malt, yeast-flavour and American hops. This beer has the best of two worlds.
sandberglar (148) - Scottsdale, USA - JUN 12, 2010
3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Clear bronze with a foamy beige head that leaves good lacing. Got that belgian yeast smell, bready, doughy and spicy, just not my thing. Good medium body, Very hoppy and spicy with a that bready taste as well. Personally I wasn’t blown away, but it was made well.