It’s a fruity time at Ballistic at the moment.
The second in their Neighbourhood series of international collaborations, Mandarin IPA is the joint effort of Ballistic and Vietnam’s Pasteur Street Brewing. Since the crew at Pasteur Street are known for adding ingredients that showcase the agricultural and culinary traditions of Vietnam – and have shown their love of citrus with the bangin’ Pomelo IPA – the two breweries decided to work together to make a West Coast IPA with mandarin.
It’s a stunningly clear drop, worthy of perusal before the first sip. The citrus characteristics of Eclipse and Centennial hops tie in nicely with the mandarin, as well as bringing a pine sap quality that provides some bite. But there’s nothing harsh here: the addition of Talus really round out the flavours, taking any sharp edges off the citrus. A dry and pithy bitterness sticks with you in the aftertaste like toilet paper on your shoe, except instead of it being embarrassing or hilarious (depending on your point of view), it's just tasty.
As for the label art: I’ll leave this video with the Pasteur Street crew to explain the long-breasted monster woman to you.
Jumping across to another series of Ballistic beers, Twang Guava & Passionfruit Sour is positively oozing with fruit character. The guava is soft, hiding in the background with its floral notes, but the tang of passionfruit stands at the forefront. It brings to mind passionfruit fresh off the vine, with each pulpy seed shooting into your mouth as you suck up the flesh.* The sweetness subsides, but the sourness sits on your tongue for some time after you’ve swallowed each sip.
I’m sorry, that sounded much more sexual than I intended. Would you believe I spend a disproportionate amount of my time trying to avoid innuendo while describing the sensory experience of tasting beer? [Want to send me the unexpurgated versions, Mick? – Editor]***
Published November 18, 2022 2022-11-18 00:00:00