There can only be one undistributed beer of the week. The competition is fierce in San Diego's craft beer community, but alas, someone must take the title.
This week's undistributed beer of the week is...
Mission Brewery: Plunder
Pair with: carnitas tacos or salmon salad
This brew is filled to the brim with nine different kinds of hops, making it a next-level San Diego IPA. The nose on the beer is all fruity oranges, lemons, mango and grapefruit. The impressive hop profile gives the beer that big bite we crave here in San Diego, while still remaining a nicely balanced, highly drinkable brew.
If you haven't had the chance to sip this brew yet, the opportunity is coming around again. This beer was released a few years back and hasn't made an appearance since for several reasons, but mainly due to unavailability and scarcity. We're happy to see it return because it is one of Mission Brewery's top offerings of hoppy goodness.
Plunder is burnt Amber in color and made with nine (yes, nine) different types of hops. It's fresh, piny and based in citrus flavors.
Bobby Oliver, Lead Brewer at Mission Brewery, says that this beer is worth a taste because it may be one of Mission Brewery's best beers.
"I believe that Plunder is Mission Brewery's best foot forward and best representation of what a west coast IPA really is," Oliver said.
While making a strong, hop-infused product is definitely an intention that a brewer has when utilizing so many hop varieties in one beer, it's certainly not all that goes into making Plunder outstanding. Oliver relayed to us the one crucial thing that makes a hoppy beer something worth sipping on: balance.
"The most important thing to me is how balanced this beer is," Oliver said. "It has a lot of aroma, there are huge notes of tropical fruit but then the malt backbone kicks in, and it really rounds out the beer."
We taste a lot of incredible IPAs in our brewery-filled city, to the point where your tongue may be burnt -out on that distinguishable kick that we have grown accustomed to. That's why Oliver has worked to create a much more easy-to-drink version of the same style we know and love on the West Coast.
"A lot of IPAs these days can be very astringent and punch you in the face, but Plunder is an exception, largely due to the grain bill," he said.
The marriage of hops with the ultra malty grain bill creates a resiny taste, leaving that tasty, residual grapefruit flavor and some lingering tropical fruit notes. These fruity flavors are also thanks in part to the use of Falconer's Flight and Simcoe hops, both of which are stand-out stars amongst the selections used to make this brew.
This beer will be available to try on tap at Mission Brewery sparingly through April until it's official release date to the public on May 1. The beer will become available on draft and 22-ounce bottles from the brewery to start once "officially" released. Get it while it's cold!
Mission Brewery, 1441 L St.. downtown. missionbrewery.com