Stone & Wood Counter Culture: Hopposite Seasons

Cold IPA

The cold IPA is proving to have legs. The IPA variant that's kinda like but not quite an India pale lager might not have captured the market in the same way hazies of all forms have, but they continue to appear with relative regularity – certainly more than their predecessor-of-sorts, the Brut IPA, did.

For this Counter Culture release, Stone & Wood's brewers have used the style to showcase hops drawn from growing regions on (h)opposite sides of the planet: Nectaron and Superdelic from NZ; Citra Cryo, Simcoe Cryo and Mosaic Cryo from the US. The aim with such IPAs is to keep them lean: the malt character is so restrained as to be barely noticeable, allowing the hops to claim all the glory. I've found the approach tends to keep the impact of hops pretty lean and mean too, and that's the case here.

Don't get me wrong: they're very apparent and distinctive, it's just that they come at your olfactory system in a much more refined and regimented way than how you'll have been assaulted by the very same varieties in myriad other IPAs. Hopposite Seasons pours as clear as a classic pilsner with the whitest of white heads, and brings forth lovely, clean tropical and soft citrus aromas and flavours. There's a minerality that makes it rather reminiscent of a riesling, and it's both delicate (for 7.5 percent ABV) and delish.

They say hopposites attract, and IPA fans will certainly be attracted to this Counter Culture release.

James Smith

Published September 9, 2023

Stone & Wood (Lion/Kirin)

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