Beer Review: SMUTTYNOSE STONE CLUSTERS LAST STAND

Beer Review: SMUTTYNOSE STONE CLUSTERS LAST STAND

Publisher: Smuttynose Brewing in Collaboration with Stone Brewing Co.
Genre: Beer Reviews, IPA
Print Length: 22 oz. bottle
ISBN: N/A

Smuttynose Brewing and Stone Brewing Company come together to resurrect a piece of brewing history in “Clusters Last Stand.” This collaborative effort, inspired by Mitch Steele’s epic exploration of India Pale Ales, recreates the original Ballantine IPA recipe from the post-Prohibition era. However, does this beer stand out in the crowded market of contemporary brews?

A Deeper Dive into the Brew

The ingredient list alone sets “Clusters Last Stand” apart from your typical IPA. North American 2-Row, Flaked Maize, Munich 10L, and C-60 malts blend with a unique hop combination of Cluster, Brewers Gold, East Kent, and Bullion. The yeast, rumored to be the original Ballantine strain, adds another layer of historical significance.

Tasting Notes: A Symphony of Flavors

Appearance: The amber gold pour is accompanied by a thick white cap, leaving behind impressive lacing. A visual treat for any beer enthusiast.

Aroma: The scent profile boasts pine, grapefruit essence, and hints of apricot preserves, promising a sensory journey.

Taste: As the liquid gold hits the palate, piney American hops take center stage, accompanied by a subtle fruitiness. The interplay of sweet and toasted malts culminates in an earthy bitterness that lingers.

Mouthfeel: “Clusters Last Stand” delivers a full-bodied experience with average carbonation, elevating the overall drinking sensation.

The Verdict: Tradition Meets Contemporary Flavor

Despite not aligning with personal IPA preferences, “Clusters Last Stand” proves to be a remarkably tasty and fresh creation. The collaboration between Smuttynose Brewing and Stone Brewing Company has breathed new life into a historical recipe, making it accessible to a wider audience. This slightly larger run ensures that more enthusiasts can savor the unique blend of tradition and contemporary appeal in every sip. Cheers to the brewers for resurrecting a piece of brewing heritage!