From the Beer Writer: I am a big fan of single-hop beers. I enjoy the opportunity to experience a hop varietal on its own so that I can better understand how each contributes to hop blends in standard IPAs and other beers with rich, layered hop bills. Numerous local breweries produce single-hop beers, but some of my favorite come from Carlsbad’s Burgeon Beer Co. Their “Keep It” series of quarterly-released single-hop IPAs utilize four fan-favorite hops. The current edition focuses on Simcoe, a vital varietal offering a combination of citrus (lemon rind, orange zest) and pine on the nose and palate, augmented by a hint of rangy, earthy, spicy cattiness that, to me, sets this hop apart. It’s like having a red sauce or curry where there’s some outlier spice that takes it somewhere beyond the norm, and for me, that’s what sets Simcoe apart. That quality is on full-yet-balanced display in this beer, making it ever bit the standout that its featured hop is.
From the Brewer: “Simcoe is absolutely one of my favorite hops so it was inevitable that we launched our single-hopped IPA ‘Keep It’ series with that varietal. The first in the rotation of four seasonally-released, single-hopped West Coast IPAs—Simcoe, Mosaic, Nelson and Citra. Within this series, we aim to utilize whole-leaf, pelletized and Cryo hops whenever possible to provide a different sort of depth to the hop flavor and aroma experience. In Keep It Simcoe, we used whole-leaf hops in the mash, then both pellets and cryo in the whirpool and dry-hop. This trifecta has provided us a beautifully fruity profile exhibiting sweet grapefruit, citrus and slight pine notes.”—Anthony Tallman, Head Brewer, Burgeon Beer Co.