what: Westbrook Brewing Company Rinse and Repeat Simcoe Amarillo
ABV: 7 percent
Price:$15.99 for a four-pack
If you read the On Tap column above, our mention of a NEIPA may have had you scratching your head depending on just how into craft beer you are, and that’s OK. The New England India Pale Ale is something that’s really only come into popular craft beer nomenclature in the past year or so. Just google the acronym for a bevy of fun links of people debating whether or not it is an actual style separate from English or American IPAs. So what adds the “N” and the “E” to an NEIPA? What sets these IPAs apart is often a hazy or cloudy appearance brought on by aggressive hopping, and usually dry-hopping at the end of the brewing process, giving the beer lots of hop aroma without the bitterness of regular IPAs. If you’ve ever had a somewhat cloudy IPA and thought, “Oh, this tastes juicy!” then you’ve probably had a NEIPA, even if it wasn’t called such at the time.
Charleston’s Westbrook has embraced the NEIPA haze craze and started the excellent Rinse and Repeat Series, where each release focuses on a different hop or combination of hops. The current release (these all should be enjoyed as fresh as possible) features Simcoe and Amarillo hops, combining for a flavor profile that is both highly citrusy and somewhat woody. Like all of these Rinse and Repeat releases, it’s a delicious way to learn something about different hop varieties while enjoying a style of beer that’s enjoying massive popularity right now and could conceivably win over beer drinkers who have always dismissed IPAs as too bitter. — Tug Baker