Today is IPA Day and we’re celebrating this by giving you a run down of some of our favourite IPAs – we may even be tempted to crack a couple open.

India Pale Ale – the go to beer of choice for beer fans across the globe and a beer that even has its own celebration day! IPA is a beer style that has arguably been interpreted and reinvented in more ways than any other. Off the top my head I can count the following styles: Session IPA, Standard IPA, Imperial IPA or Double IPA and the oxymoronic Black IPA.

Plenty has been written about the history of the IPA and I don’t intend to add to it here other than to say in a nutshell the legend goes the style was developed back when Britain ruled India in order to placate the thirst for English ale of the colonial rulers stationed there. To survive the 6 month journey from Britain to India, brewers began to brew it to a higher abv and packed the beers full of hops such that the beer wouldn’t spoil thanks to the natural preserving qualities of both the alcohol and the hops. Hence we are left with a style that should probably be both very hoppy and quite high in abv. A quick search on google will reveal a whole heap of different and interesting stories about its origin though so do yourself a favour and look them up!

Before you do that though, here are our top five IPAs we currently have avaialable:

1. De Molen – Amarillo IPA – 9.2%

Named after the dominant hop in this brew, this imperial/double IPA from Dutch brewery De Molen weighs in at 9.2%. The liberal use of the American Amarillo hop means plenty of orange & dried fruit aroma, and a bitter finish on the palate. It pours a beautiful orange colour and is a perfect beer to drink with friends.

2. Four Pure – Session IPA Can – 4.2%

Packing all the hop punch of a standard IPA but with a lower ABV, at 4.2% this is what is meant by a session IPA. Crystal & Cascade hops marry together for a mouthfeel that is both bitter and fruity at the same time.

3. Dark Star – Six Hop – 6.5%

Quite simply, this is a beast of a beer. Six different varieties of hops, used during six stages of the brewing process by six brewers…this beer represents a true commitment to the hop  cause!

Bitter as hell and as complex as a pure maths equation, this beer is best enjoyed whilst watching the final of University Challenge.

4. BrewDog – Libertine Black Ale – 7.2%

A perfect collision of flavours, with the coffee & roast of the dark malts offset by the citrus notes of the Simcoe hops. An absolute hop bomb that leads your eyes to think one thing whilst your palate thinks another. One of the best examples of a black IPA in the UK.

5. Flying Dog – Snake Dog IPA – 7.1%

The representative for the USA, Snake Dog India Pale Ale is a Colorado-style IPA, power hopped with specialty hops from the Pacific Northwest. An absolute hop monster, this beer pours amber in colour, with citrus fruit aroma and a bitterness that hits the palate with almighty force.