Welcome to Thirsty Thursday, a weekly column where we pick a beer from our fridge and review it, because in a world where two new breweries launch every single week, sometimes we need some help sifting through all of the hops.
I’m going to come right out and say it: I’ve been on a hazy IPA kick for several weeks now. While I put the blame on the deliciousness of New Trail Brewing Company’s hazy double IPA Goggles, I just cannot get enough of that bitter, juicy flavor. So, while I have plenty of mixed singles in the fridge, I decided to head over to the beer store to try and find something new that might satisfy my recent hazy obsession. As kind of the trendy beer subcategory these days, I was inundated with hyper-local efforts and just a few from various places across the country.
In the end, I decided to try something that was nowhere remotely close to the Philadelphia area, for no other reason than I wanted to get a take on the flavor from somewhere else. My choice was State of Haze, a northeast-style IPA from Nevada-based Revision Brewing Company. With so many different breweries popping up these days, it’s hard to keep track of them all and I will admit that, when I purchased this beer, I knew nothing about the company other than what the label said.
Founded in 2017 in Sparks, Nevada – a suburb of Reno – by Jeremy Warren and Jeb Taylor, Revision produced just over 5,000 barrels in its first year. Revision’s primary focus is hop-forward beers, which has earned the company several awards including both a gold and silver medal at the 2018 World Beer Cup. Revision hopes to grow to about 20,000 barrels soon, according to its site, as it looks to continue to push out a whole slew of efforts, on top of six year-round beers.
State of Haze is a part of the brewery’s hazy release series featuring 30 IPAs and DIPAs that offer massive fans like myself similar northeast-style beers with just subtle variances. This particular brew is 6.0 percent alcohol by volume and a 37 on the international bitterness units scale, though I was unable to find exactly what hops make up this limited availability beer.
One of the reasons I selected State of Haze was the label. I was immediately drawn to the look of this 16-ounce pounder can which features a Jamaican theme of red, yellow and green along with palm trees, hops, lions and a huge sign of the horns – a hand giving the metal symbol. Not only does it relay the beer’s ABV and IBUs but it also does a good job explaining what the drinker is about to consume, something I’m big on, stating:
Living in a State of Haze, the future is murky but the present is dee-licious. Notes of bright tangerine and ripe pineapple delivered to your flavor hole (The Flavorifice) on a soft bed of wheat and oats. No one knows what tomorrow will bring, but chill in the present enjoying the tastes, the tunes and the lush, green hops of goodness.
When I cracked it open, the smell was exactly what I hoped it would be, abundantly citrusy, while I also noticed hints of floral and guava aromas. After learning from Heady Topper that it’s better to drink these beers out of the can, I made sure to sip it before pouring it. It poured like most of its other contemporaries, medium-bodied with a golden color and, of course, a strong level of haze. I thought there was underwhelming white head, but the carbonation was solid.
Far and away the best part of this beer was the taste – you know, the reason we all drink it. The taste was very similar to the smell, with a strong citrus presence and floral notes to it. There’s just a slight hoppy bitterness on the back-end that left me wanting to come back for more. I’m sure there are more complex flavors mixed in there, though my palate is not on the level yet to pick out each and every note. As per most hazy efforts, State of Haze is a very drinkable beer and since it has a lower alcohol content, it’s a beer you can continue to consume at parties or social events.
There is one humongous knock on this beer and that would be the cost.
Maybe it’s because it came from the other side of the United States but the four-pack of pounders was $18.50. Now, I like this beer, but for that price there are much better beers – both IPAs and others – I would turn to, even ones that are a little more well known on a national level. Bring down the price just a little and State of Haze becomes much more attractive to both my wallet and taste buds. But that doesn’t deter my rating too much, as I give it a 7.9 out of 10, which is just a little lower than its 4.2 average rating on BeerAdvocate. It’s good, drinkable and has me keeping my eyes open for other offerings from Revision.
Stay tuned for next week, because I might just try something from your favorite brewery.