For Brewsvegas 2018, three brewers on the south side of Brisbane (Ballistic, Slipstream and Helios) decided they would each brew a beer – with a few rules. The beer would be between 4.5 and 6.5 percent ABV; it would use at least 90 percent Munich malt; and it would include at least 75 percent Loral hops, a relatively new variety that combines elements of both New and Old World hop characteristics. In the case of Ballistic, they took that brief and made an American style red IPA that’d catch people off their guard.
The Ride contains generous amounts of Loral hops, which were added at the boil, whirlpool and dry-hopping stages, with some Simcoe and Columbus to add complexity. But, if you’re hoping to have your senses assaulted by the hops, you’ll miss the subtle Loral characteristics this beer showcases. Loral is gentler than some of the more aggressive varieties of hops available, lending soft floral aromas to The Ride, and giving lemony citrus notes on the tongue, with a little pepperiness and herbal character in the back end.
But that doesn’t mean this is a mild-flavoured beer. Because the hops aren’t obnoxiously loud, they’re willing to share the stage with the specialty malts in this brew. A huge caramel aroma sets the scene for the full, silky body and the burnt caramel flavours that balance out the hop characteristics. Mostly sweet, with a slow move to bitterness in the finish, you can forget the destination, and just enjoy The Ride.
And, if you're out and about during Brewsvegas, look out for other recent Ballistic releases, the Ouroboros Oatmeal Stout created with The Brisbane Brewing Club, a Tropical Pale Ale and the collaborative Bright NEIPA.
Published March 13, 2018 2018-03-13 00:00:00