Brewdog Prototype Session IPL

Brewdog: Prototype: Session IPL (Scotland: Premium Lager: 4.4% ABV)

Visual: Clean yellowed grain with moderate white bubbled head. Some carbonation to the main body.

Nose: Grapefruit. Dry malt. Fluffy lemon hops. Dried apricot.

Body: Creamy lemon. Apricot. Light bitterness. Fluffy mouthfeel yet crisp. Grapes. Pepper. Light vanilla.

Finish: Crisp character and fluffy hops. Moderate bitterness. Lemon. Passion fruit. Light peppermint and aniseed. Orange crème.

Conclusion: It is Brewdog tries lager time again. They are still trying for that one that genuinely amazes while still coming in at an abv that doesn’t kick your teeth in. They have managed some excellent high abv collaboration lagers, but generally only manage good for their more mainstream stuff. Still, bless them for keeping trying.

This one does pretty well, though it doesn’t stick too close to the public impression of a lager, instead going the moderate hopped route.

It comes in citrus filled and with a good but not excessive hop kick. Lots of softer fruit notes, from lemon, to grapes and passion fruit – gentle but mouth filling. This is backed by a soft pepper character that calls a bit more to the noble hop styles. The notes only become more full and complex over time – the base beer becoming less creamy and more crisp as it warms.

In the end it balances larger styling and big fruit flavours well. The bitterness may be rough for people used to more gentle lagers, but isn’t going to shock any experienced hop head – it is a backing not the main course.

It doesn’t have that something that will make it an all time great, but despite that it is a solid as can be lager and I am impressed. I have no objections at all to this becoming part of the main range exactly as it is. Easy to drink, but plenty going on if you take your time, with a finish that keeps going for such a long time.

Ok Brewdog, ye did this one good.

Background: Prototype time again, for beers which may or may not be tweaked and turn up in the future. As always I am not an unbiased actor on Brewdog beer, though in complex ways. I decided to go for this hopped India Pale Lager first as Brewdog trying a lager always interests me, even if it is not their strong style- incidentally, the continued use of India to just mean hopped for naming beer styles is becoming ridiculous now. Drunk while listing to some Fear Factory and Napalm Death to remember a bunch of live gigs this year. Good times.

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