Award-winning Irish beers for the weekend

Beerista: Grafters range by Rye River gets a revamp; plus Beoir names their top Irish beers

Beer of the Year 2019: Yellow Belly’s Citra Pale Ale

Beer of the Year 2019: Yellow Belly’s Citra Pale Ale

 

As abbreviations go, IPA has a nice, neat ring to it. NEIPA, on the other hand, does not – never mind a DDH NEIPA. That’s a double dry-hopped New England India Pale Ale, just to be clear. 

Yes you could be forgiven for thinking that brewers are out to make things confusing with all their abbreviations and acronyms. It’s worth keeping in mind, however, that by far most craft beers are some variation on an India pale ale. There’s malty and bitter (West Coast IPA), or hazy and juicy (New England IPA or North Eastern IPA) or the bigger double IPA (DIPA) or a black one (BIPA) – or one of the many other interpretations of the style that are often double or triple dry hopped for extra aroma and flavour.  

Grafters Working Day IPA is a classic, straight-up IPA that leans towards the West Coast style with some resinous, piny hoppy flavour and a balanced but assertive finishing bitterness
Grafters Working Day IPA is a classic, straight-up IPA that leans towards the West Coast style with some resinous, piny hoppy flavour and a balanced but assertive finishing bitterness

If you’re looking a classic, straight-up IPA, Grafters Working Day IPA leans towards the West Coast style with some resinous, piny hoppy flavour and a balanced but assertive finishing bitterness. It pours clear and clocks in at 6.5 per cent. The Grafters range, which is made by Rye River in Co Kildare, has recently been revamped and includes their Labour of Love Extra Pale, a 4.5 per cent pale ale which is light, citrussy and with a touch of honey. Overall it’s a very easy-going pale ale that might be a little slight on flavour if you’re into your hoppy and bitter beers.

Clocking Off Kolsch, which won a World Beer Award, is a lagered ale which is a kind of hybrid style that means the beer was stored cold for a period. It’s crisp and clean with a sweet grainy character.

And speaking of awards, the consumer group Beoir recently crowned Yellow Belly’s Citra Pale Ale as Beer of the Year 2019, while Whiplash’s Northern Lights Micro IPA was runner-up. Both are worth seeking out – or revisiting – for a quality sup.

@ITbeerista beerista@irishtimes.com

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