Being based in Southern California, we’re lucky enough to have access to a tremendous variety of good local brews. Naturally, one of our old favorite local brewers is Stone, and one of our all-time favorite releases from them is their “Enjoy By” series. Stone loads this baby up with hops, hops, and more hops; a video on their website claims 9 different varietals: Super Galena, Simcoe, Delta, Amarillo, Motueka, Citra, Cascade, Nelson Sauvin, and Galaxy!
Instead of hiding their best-by date on the back label in some smeared code of black dots you can’t decipher, Stone plasters the date on the front of the bottle. In fact, it’s basically the name of the beer.
Weird? Yep, but it makes total sense because Stone has brewed this double IPA with so much intense and aromatic hops, that it simply must be imbibed as soon as possible – in all its fresh, hoppy glory – before the delicate hop aroma compounds begin their inevitable decay.
So with today being the deadline for Enjoy By 10-25-13, we had to crack open our last bottle this afternoon. Not a bad way to end the week. So what does it taste like you ask? Hop Heaven I say.
“A verdant garden after a spring rain,” says Jason, our marble-collecting Systems Administrator. And you know what? He’s right. The hops jump out at you so incredibly fresh in both aroma and flavor – so floral and loaded with citrus and tropical fruit – that you simply can’t crave anything else while you’re drinking it. And that’s the mark of a great beer. We think arguing over which beer is the “best” of a given style is pointless, but if one absolutely must debate about the best IPAs and DIPAs being brewed today, Enjoy By belongs in the discussion.
Check out Stone’s Enjoy By page to keep track of batches as they’re released to see if any will be making it to your area of the country. If so, grab a bottle. They’re not cheap, but trust us it’s worth it.
Have a great weekend everyone.