Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 9/9/2016 (1839 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
As you likely already know, India Pale Ales are one of my favourite beer styles — after Belgian-style ales. IPAs to me are simply delicious and show off what it means to be a hop.
Over the years, my preferred IPA has changed many times. In 2008, when Half Pints was booming in the beer scene, their Little Scrapper IPA was the very beer that taught me that Alexander Keith’s is NOT an IPA.
The problem with IPAs is that hops can be hard to source. If there’s a bad crop in the Pacific Northwest, breweries have to get their hops from other sources, which means that they may have to use an entirely different strain of hop than what they regularly use.
When a brewery uses a different strain of hop for any beer, or if they use a more conservative supply, the beer tastes a bit different. That’s what I found with Half Pints — my favourite IPA was not as bitter as it used to be so I wanted something with a bit more bitterness.
Red Racer quickly replaced Little Scrapper as my favourite IPA. The problem was it quickly turned into Westman’s favourite craft IPA — to the point that whenever any Liquor Mart received stock, it would dwindle down to nothing.
Another thing about Red Racer was that the flavours were starting to change as soon as they started distributing to Ontario and Quebec. So instead of the fresh pine and alfalfa notes I was familiar with, I was getting a more bitter finish with a soapy aftertaste.
More recently, Driftwood Brewing’s Fat Tug came to town and damn — that’s one of the best IPAs I’ve ever had, and it soon became my new favourite IPA. At this point, you would think I would have settled on Fat Tug — but nope!
Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks out of Richmond, B.C., came to Manitoba earlier this year and my buddy Chris in Vancouver kept raving about all their beers — to the point that he now works for the brewery. Fuggles & Warlock brought their Destiny IPA to Manitoba back in the spring, and it’s easily my favourite IPA at the moment.
Pouring Destiny IPA, it gives off a mostly clear golden body with a hint of cloudiness, and a very thick snow white head that quickly diminishes into residue on the side of the glass.
The aroma has a West Coast meets tropical vibe to it, combining a rich pine aroma with a moderate herbal spruce note, a rich lemongrass scent and, to top it all off, a liberal amount of tropical pineapple, grapefruit and mango fruitiness.
As for the taste, the beer starts off with an herbal spruce tip flavour with a bitter pine taste that really makes an impact on the palate. Again, there are also tropical flavours of pineapple, grapefruit and mango.
For the most part, this beer is more of a West Coast bitter IPA rather than a tropical fruit-forward IPA like you would find in New Zealand.
Someone who isn’t familiar with IPAs may be wondering why a bitter beer can be fruity. Well, there are varieties of hops that can replicate many different kinds of flavours and in Destiny IPA, they use seven different hop varieties to give it a complex, fruity, bitter and herbal profile.
The first hop listed, Galaxy, is a tropical fruit-forward hop that originated in Australia and New Zealand, while Cascade, a hop used in most North American IPAs, gives off the pine and bitter profile.
The last beer I’ve ever had that had an aroma and flavour profile comparable to Destiny IPA was Sip of Sunshine IPA from Lawson’s Finest Liquids out of Vermont, which was darn tasty and regarded as one of the best India Pale Ales in the United States.
If you are a fan of IPAs, Destiny is easily one of the most underrated beers available in Manitoba right now. It’s available at the 10th and Victoria Liquor Mart for $6.50 per 650mL bottle, packing six per cent ABV and 62 IBUs.