Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Imperial IPAs — Pyramid vs. Oakshire

Outburst Imperial IPA
ABV 8.5%

The Perfect Storm
Double IPA
ABV 9.3% 

Ever since our friend Geoff posted a glowing review of the Pyramid Outburst last year we've been wanting to feature it in a battle. Imperial IPAs tend to be a bit spendier than most beers so finding one that is good and inexpensive is a worthy pursuit. Fighting against the Outburst was an Imperial (or Double if you'd prefer) IPA from Oakshire in Eugene. We've enjoyed many of Oakshire's beers in the past so we were excited to try this offering. As usual, my lovely wife did the honor of pouring the beers out of my sight so I could taste them blind. 
Right from the get-go it was a mighty duel. Both had a bold hop presence and a solid malt backbone to temper the bitterness. It was a see-saw battle. Just as one seemed to be rising to the top of our list the other would have us second guessing. After much deliberation the one we both chose was the Pyramid Outburst. It had a funky, earthy hop aroma and a sweet (yet still bitter) honey malt flavor followed by a solid bitter finish. The Perfect Storm featured a sharp, herbal, floral aroma along with an intense and long-lasting citrus rind bitterness in the finish. As usual, we chose the one that had the least bitter finish. We are nothing if not consistent.
Both are worth your attention. Go with the Outburst if you're looking for a solid double IPA at a great price and splurge for The Perfect Storm if you are looking for a double IPA that will sock you right in the taste buds and make you feel good about it. 
Winner by Unanimous Decision: Pyramid Outburst

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