Are you familiar with It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia? If not, you should be, for this is a true pop culture benchmark. The television sitcom, currently in its 12th season on FXX, is poised to become the longest running live-action comedy in television history. Thus: perfect fodder for inspiring great beer. Please find a lovely, musically inclined snippet below:
Good luck getting that song out of your head. I assume the brewers at Aslin couldn’t, and so when they had to come up with names for their two New England IPAs, Master of Karate and Champion of the Sun were born.
New England IPAs are not an especially new style of beer; Heady Topper was the first of this style, brewed in Vermont since the 1990s’. Heady Topper has amassed a cult following, especially in recent years, so many craft brewers have been developing recipes for New England IPAs. It’s got the hops, but the flavor is less bitter and crisp that traditional, West Coast IPAs. Instead, New England IPAs are juicy and fruity, and purposefully cloudy and hazy in appearance. This makes the mouthfeel almost creamy, and that’s pretty funky for an IPA.
Of the two It’s Always Sunny inspired offerings, my preference is for the Maser of Karate, a double New England IPA. A double IPA has a higher ABV than a single, so while the Champion of the Sun sits at 6.2%, the Master of Karate contains a whopping 8.4% ABV. You cannot tell how much alcohol is in these beers by the taste! Both beers look a bit like cloudy juicy, bright and opaque, when poured. The Master and the Champion have similar flavor profiles; a really delightful combination of citrus and stone fruit with trace of hop flavor at the end. As with other New England IPAs, this hop flavor is not bitter, but rather earthy.
Aslin Beer Co. is a small brewery operating as a retailer of their beers, and their beers alone. In fact, you cannot buy their beers anywhere else! They come out with a different batch every week, and the brewery is only open from Thursday to Sunday. The rarity of these beers no doubt make them more special; if you’re ever in proximity to Aslin or know someone who will be, make sure they grab you a four-pack or better yet, a case!