Having first discovered this beer when a wax-clad bottle drew my eye to the top shelf back in early 2015, Decadent Imperial IPA by Ska Brewing quickly cemented itself thereafter as one of all time favourites. Unfortunately this dapper gent has remained rather elusive since, only for the occasional cameo appearance in the Thomas House (a fitting bar for any of the Ska range).
Originally produced as a celebratory brew to mark their decennial, it is clear to taste just why these Colorado brewers decided to class up their operation year-round and extend an invitation to our well-dressed skeleton friend, to continue to grace our most regal of events and parties with his presence.
As with the way many brewers seem to be gravitating, Ska have recently released their most indulgent of brews in a new twelve-ounce can form. Though lacking the elegant red wax seal that adorns its larger compatriot, rest assured that what shall be found inside is not lacking in one single drop of sophistication and class.
Pouring a vivid orange with a slight opaqueness, crowned by a solid white head giving way to a steady cap. There are big hits of clementine and caramel on the nose with faint aromatic notes. It’s a seriously malty sip, almost herbaceous with a subtle spiciness on the back of the tongue and absolutely drenched to the bone in cascade hoppiness.
With many other beers in the double-digit ABV territory tending to be high end sipping beers, it is astonishing just how quenching and drinkable this 10% IPA is. Paired with some thick slices of fresh seedy spelt bread and you are in for a whole other level of indulgence. Bitter but balanced, deadly but decadent and still one of my all time favourites.
Decadent Imperial IPA by Ska Brewing is available at Martin’s Off License at €4.89.
Having previously devoted every ounce of his spare time to music, Tony is more commonly found these days in a kitchen than on a stage. With experience in writing on festivals and shows around the country he has recently turned his pen to more culinary exposés. With a particular penchant for craft beer he can often be spotted travelling from one bar to another in search of the latest brew to hit the market.