When Margaret River Brewhouse grace us with one of their limited release brews, it’s often akin to being walloped across the face with a sucker punch, whether that's in the shape of a big stout, a puckering sour or a wall of hops. 8 Ball Double IPA fits in the last of those categories: an 8.2 percent ABV, 60-plus IBU hop bomb.
American in style and resinous by design, 8 Ball is a full-flavoured, big-bodied IPA of days gone by. The Margaret River Brewhouse team are brave enough to drop such a style in the current haze and oat driven climate, not holding back when adding stacks of Citra, Columbus and Simcoe hops to yield thick layers of citrus, pine, mouth-drying astringency and a familiar dank edge. A burnt-orange hue and some needed viscosity is a result of an extensive malt bill that lends length and notes of caramel, underpinning and bringing balance to an otherwise supremely hoppy ale.
I sampled the second batch of this fan favourite created with the Grain Cru team in Perth, which might require a third reiteration sooner rather than later thanks to the feverish response of WA hopheads.
- Double IPA
- 60-plus IBU