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Shepherd Neame / Stone California Double IPA

Shepherd Neame / Stone California Double IPA
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Formerly brewed at Shepherd Neame
Style: India Pale Ale (IPA)
Faversham, England
Serve in Shaker, Tulip


on tap


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RATINGS: 28   MEAN: 4.31/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.02/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%
Cask: Special - 2008
Brewed at Shepherd Neame by brewers from Stone for Wetherspoons Spring Festival 2008.
It is intensely hoppy, with a solid malt foundation which supports and even balances the ridiculous amount of hops used. Citrus and pine hop flavours are provided by the American hop varieties, while the English variety used provides a clean bitterness.
Hops used: American Centennial, American Simcoe, English Target.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
tjncfc54 (2) - ENGLAND - APR 7, 2008 does not count
Probably one of the best beers I have ever tasted. The initial sip shocks the taste buds and never disappoints thereafter. A very hoppy and heavily malted strong tasting pint. Definitely not a session beer though. Certainly one to try. You would never know it was American as itís nothing like most beers from the USA.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
downender (7679) - Bristol, Gloucestershire, ENGLAND - APR 5, 2008
Cask-conditioned at the Crosse Keys (JDW), City of London 3/4/08. Deep golden colour with a tight white head. Huge hop aroma, with thick pine, grapefruit and orange blossom, balanced by a touch of caramel. Full mouth feel, the beer coated the mouth with a layer of slighlty creamy malt and prickly citrus and pine hops. Finished long and dry. The alcohol was very well hidden. Excellent all round.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
chriso (7513) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - APR 5, 2008
Cask (handpump) at the Wetherspoons beer festival launch event, Crosse Keys, City of London, March 2008. With sparkler and without. Amber colour. Lovely condition. The aroma knocked my socks off and hit me well before the beer got anywhere near my nose. Sappy and herbaceous, but also citric and resinous. The grapefruit really kicked in on the palate. I was rather dubious about the use of Target hops as I think they generally produce boring beers but they did nothing to drag the beer down in this case. If anything they enhanced the effect by adding a very slightly spicy British twist. And it has a firm pale malt backdrop to provide exemplary balance, so its not just a one-trick pony. Nice pithy, sharp grip in the mouthfeel but hugely smooth and drinkable for the style. Superb in every respect. Doubly enjoyable to be able to drink it in the company of Greg and Mitch. Lets hope the Sheps brewers learn something. If theyíve recovered from the shock yet.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
SilkTork (5506) - Southampton, United Kingdom, Hampshire, ENGLAND - APR 5, 2008
JDW, Rochester. Part of the Grand National breakfast. Mmmmm. Iíve always liked Stone beers since Krisbierjaeger sent me an Arrogant bastard. They have worked for me where some other extreme American beers have not. I think thereís an understanding of the brewing process, the need for quality ingredients, and a balance between the malt and the hops, that make Stone stand out. This has a stunning aroma of citric fruit. O yes - this is a lovely beer indeed. It goes down too quickly - there is so much to savour, explore and enjoy that a half pint goes in no time and you are forced - there is no option here - to buy another one, even though this is 9.30 in the morning. This is fresh and glorious, the mix of English and American hops is stunning - the American hops soaring like angels on high, a heavenly chorus of citric joy, and the solid, stubborn earthy English hops holding it all together with a quiet and firm stoicism. There is so much joy and pleasure in this beer I could sing its praises till the evening comes or I pass out on the floor. Simply glorious. Simply stunning. Simply awesome. What a breakfast!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
duff (5484) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - APR 4, 2008
UPDATED: APR 5, 2008 Cask@The Spoons at Liverpool St Station, with thanks to Ang for another pint. Had 3 pints all up and was loving it. More earthy than Stones other IPAís/ DIPAís, i guess due to the use of English hops as well as US varieties. This was still very hoppy, with some nice floral hop notes. Very sappy, earthy and floral hop notes throughout. UK BREWERS TAKE NOTE, WE NEED MORE BEERS LIKE THIS, Loved the bitterness, which was intense enough without being over the top. Well done Stone!!

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
albertane (377) - Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, ENGLAND - APR 3, 2008
Cask at the Joseph Else, Nottingham. On the advice of raters here, I asked for the sparkler to be removed. Iíd been looking for this beer for days and it lived up to the hype, completely. The aroma is soft and fruity with peaches and tropical fruit. The flavour is rich and full but belies its ABV. Thereís more fruit with pepper and citrus fruit, especially limes. Itís one of the best beers Iíve ever had; if only it were a regular instead of a festival special.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
RPillsbury (115) - Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, ENGLAND - APR 3, 2008
Cask at the Joseph Else, Nottingham. The aroma of this beer is incredible; a lovely mix of the earthiness of pine and grass with the fruitiness of a lot of peach and some lychee. The flavour is outstanding as well; the fruity and earthy flavours are there with an added depth from the malt and a touch of pepper. The finish was nice and lingering of dry hops. Iíve only felt this way about a beer when I first tried Jaipur. Genius.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
DonMagi (5594) - bantervile, Bedfordshire, ENGLAND - APR 1, 2008
UPDATED: APR 4, 2008 Cask in the counting house shared with the brewers! Now after moning and complainging and boo humbug british cask ale is pish, i walk in right at the death to find this. Its like a double high 5 back flipping awsomeness. Everything i love about american hops, biut soo drinkable. Im talkin like soooooo drinkable. 4 pints in an hour drinkable and then mes had to carry me up the road drinkable. ALL BRITISH BREWERS TAKE NOTE: THIS IS HOW ITS DONE! RERATE: Same score, same awsomeness and as you can imagine the same messyness afterwards.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
evilsoc (191) - WALES - APR 1, 2008
Cask conditioned, gravity served without a sparkler. Pale orange, slight haze. The aroma can only be described as fresh, fesh hops. Like actually putting your head in a bucket of dried cascades or something. There is a massive citrusy grapefruit and lemon hit amongst grass and resin, think sap. The malt balance is just right, i.e. thereís caramel under there somewhere trying to get attention. The mouthfeel is good, giving body to the layers of bitterness. Spikes if hot black pepper linger on and on. This has reaffirmed the style as my very favourite. A genuine thanks to íspoons, shep neame and stones for making this happen.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Mungo (2471) - Southampton, Hampshire, ENGLAND - APR 1, 2008
Cask conditioned@ Standing Order (JDW), Soton. Slightly hazy orange and very slow to settle to a brighter golden colour. Massively hoppy aroma like sticking your head in the fermenter of a beer being dry hopped, really fresh peppery resiny grassy hops. Whilst this is a hop driven beer the malt does make itself felt (rather than tasted) in the thick slightly sweet body. There is not quite as much bitterness as I expected (and perhaps would have liked given the malt sweetness) but it has that enamel stripping feel that leaves your teeth squeaky clean. Not especially clean finish part malt fullness and sticky hop resins. A very interesting and tasty beer. I would have happily ordered a pint (after this half) but unfortunately had to return to work, this level of hoppy drinkability at 7% could be dangerous.

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