Since moving to Portland, I have discovered that I have some great neighbors. One of these is the New Old Lompoc, which is a stone's throw down 23rd Ave. On a recent trip, I sampled their C-Note Imperial Pale and enjoyed it with my wife on their patio. An excellent place to drink.
It pours a thick amber with a very foamy head. It is cloudier than a typical IPA, I anticipate hops!
The smell is surprisingly subtle. I was expecting a full aroma of hops, but am greeted instead with a mild hop on the flowery side.
The taste is full bodied, with pronounced bitterness at the end. It definitely slakes my need for hop. I am impressed, then I start reading about....It has seven hops. Yes, seven: Crystal, Cluster, Cascade, Chinook, Centennial, Columbus and Challenger hops. This explains it's unique flavor, a hop flavor I've never had before. They advertise this beer as "Huge!" and I'll agree. It's a big beer that walks one toward the end of the sidewalk for Hop extremity. I'm not sure I've found that definitive apex of where hoppy becomes painful, but this is a solid beer at that end of the spectrum.
The aftertaste is of strong hops and bitterness. Despite being such a big beer, I argue that it goes down very easy. Although bitter, I think even those not so inclined toward extreme hop will be interested in this beer. It is a buffet of hops and worth the try!
New Old Lompoc beer is available at their brewery at 1616 NW 23rd Ave here in Portland!