The Victory No Brainer IPA pours into the glass with a crystal-clear, pale straw hue and boasts lively carbonation. The off-white foam, rising impressively, exhibits a range of bubble sizes and a rocky topography. Packaged in a 12oz can served in a stemless snifter, the beer’s presentation is notably commendable. However, the Enjoy By date, tucked away in the top left corner of the carton, could use more visibility for consumer convenience.


Diverging from the typical Southern California IPA profile, the No Brainer IPA surprises with a distinctive aroma. Notes of lemongrass, freshly baked bread reminiscent of a French bakery, buttery brioche, lemon pound cake, and Victory’s signature pilsner malt create a unique olfactory experience. Sweet guava paste lingers in the background, adding a subtle layer to the aromatic complexity.


Upon the initial sip, the No Brainer IPA presents itself as remarkably dry for its style, emphasizing bitterness. This beer is a bold, pilsner malt-focused, and grassy hop bomb, blurring the lines between a pilsner and an IPA. The heightened bitterness, coupled with a building acidity reminiscent of wet sourdough, sets this brew apart. The dryness, cleanliness, and focus on grassy hops contribute to a flavor profile that deviates from the conventional IPA, making it a distinctive and enjoyable choice.


The mouthfeel of No Brainer is notable for its crispness and dryness, characteristics not commonly associated with traditional IPAs. The beer leans heavily on its grassy hop focus, delivering a refreshing and quenching experience. The clean finish, akin to a pale lager, adds an extra layer of appeal. The overall bitterness, rated at 8/10, is complemented by a subtle sweetness, measuring barely 2/10, resulting in a balanced and approachable mouthfeel.


Victory’s No Brainer IPA challenges the conventional norms of the modern, clear IPA, particularly when compared to California breweries. Exhibiting a unique approach that blends kettle hop bitterness with the clean finish of a pale lager, this beer stands out in its category. The crisp and dry nature of the IPA may not resonate with everyone, but for those seeking a distinctive and memorable brew, No Brainer offers a refreshing departure from the norm. With an overall bitterness rating of 8/10 and minimal sweetness, it successfully marries hop intensity with a clean, quenching character. This beer, with its farmy, handmade quality and depth of flavor, stands as one of the most impressive releases from Victory Brewing in recent times. It’s a testament to the brewery’s ability to deliver unique and high-quality beers that push boundaries and offer a delightful drinking experience.