Garden Path Fermentation - The Old School The New
Serving Temperature:45–52° F
Suggested Glassware:Nonic, Tulip, or IPA Glass
As the brewery puts it: “Our take on what IPA once was, using a coolship full of hops co-fermented with native yeast in an open-top oak foudre.” Also good at setting expectations for this beer is its internal nickname—AntIPA. This beer couldn’t give a care about current trends in IPA, and we’re totally here for it. The hops include Pacific Northwest Simcoe Cryo Hops from YCH Hops, plus whole-flower Santian, Sterling and Cascade from Indie Hops.
But the result is very much an old-world IPA. British in vibe, firmly hopped with earthiness over overt citruses, and with some purposeful age behind it to allow the hop additions time to mellow out—much in the same manner that a firmly hopped IPA would have arrived after a long boat journey way back in the day. The house culture offers nice nuance to accompany that general purpose, with hints of pepper and sourdough. Ditto for the underlying oak.
Held up to the light, this beer shows off its vibrant IPA-orange core, but it’s definitely a bit darker than one would likely expect. The Old School The New is actually the darkest beer that Garden Path currently makes, employing Copeland Dark Malt and Dark 80 Malt, raw red wheat, and acidulated malt—all from nearby Skagit Valley Malting. That firm rudder of an amber-like maltiness does great work bringing all of the core elements of this old-school IPA into clarity: there’s generous red fruit, loads of earthiness and floral and biscuity malts, and a subtle intriguing twist from the impact of the native yeasts and the time spent in oak.
The Rare Beer Club Time Machine Department is still sadly just a broom closet, but this gets us imagining ourselves in a long-ago India as boat-aged IPA barrels are being unloaded. And if we’re being honest with ourselves… this version is probably way better than what our time machine would bring back. Brilliantly realized old-school IPA, with subtle Skagit Valley flair.
The Old School The New has already been purposely aged before release, as a minimum of two to three months after packaging is needed for the beer to hit its proper stride. As such, these are ready to drink and likely in their prime. Expect hop impact to continue mellowing with additional cellaring time. Old-school IPA pairings? We’re thinking curry or vindaloo.
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