Brewdog Russian Doll Double IPA

Brewdog: Russian Doll: Double IPA (Scotland: IIPA: 8% ABV)

Visual: Browned gold. Moderate off white head and some carbonation mid body.

Nose: Pine cones, resin and bitterness. Crushed digestives. Hop oils and pineapple.

Body: Resin. Pine cones. Pineapples. Kiwi. Brown bread and cake sponge. Vanilla and toffee malt mix. Bark. Barley. Kumquat. Burnt rice.

Finish: Resin. Bitterness. Brown bread. Hops.

Conclusion: Back to malt school. Damn, if actual school had been like this…well I probably still would have hated it, but for different reasons.

This is notably more chewy than the previous beers – the flavours are similar but more intense. There is a much more oily feel, and more hop oils in general – which is intriguing considering the hop levels haven’t actually increased in this beer. The malt influence means it is sweeter as well, the attenuation issue that has bugged the series so far doesn’t seem to be a problem here. However, that doesn’t mean it is not a noticeable aspect. There is a kind of brown bread base character that is kind of drying. It segues into a lighter cake sponge like notes, but the sweetness is still far away from the intensity of many an IIPA.

(As a slight digression – I am now wondering, is this the difference between IIPA and DIPA? People keep telling me they are different styles, but I have a difficulty seeing it. Are IIPA’s sweeter and DIPA’s drier? I don’t know, but I shall keep an eye out)

It is a very resinous beer, and a bitter take on the style. The hops give some fruit flavour, but not so much that they feel like a major aspect here. The hops are all about the oil and bitterness it seems – as of such it as (again) a solid beer, but not exceptional as a beer in itself. It is tasty, but there are many better IIPAs (or DIPAs). This also seems less uprising as an educational beer, but that could be due to the number of this style I have had. Still, interesting to see, so, ok as an education, ok as a beer.

Background: Third in the “Russian Doll” set. Four beers, with the same recipe except for a changing amount of malt and so higher abv for each beer. As always I am not an unbiased actor on Brewdog beers. Even if i sometimes forget to type that it is still true. So far the series has been interesting, but not exceptional, with the Pale Ale being particularly weak. This was drunk with music on random again, statring off with Gallows – In The Belly Of A Shark