Sunday, January 1, 2012

Troegs | Hopback Amber Ale

Troegs Hopback Amber Ale, which they claim to be their flagship brew. Not too surprising to hear considering we all love their seasonal classic, Nugget Nectar, which is an imperial version of Hopback. This beer gets it's name from the (optional) brewing stage called "hopbacking," which is no more than a little airtight container filled with hops. The brewed wort flows into it, and essentially gets filtered through the hops before heading out towards chilling and fermentation. As you can imagine, this extra stage of hopping adds a significant amount of aroma and flavor to the beer.

Poured into a pint glass from a 12oz bottle, Hopback has a deep amber/copper color with a moderately thick light-tan head. The aroma is of sweet and bready malt with some floral and pine hop. Smells pretty balanced, slightly more on the sweet side.

The flavor starts rather smooth and malty sweet, but hop bitterness starts to creep in. Citrus, pine, and floral hops shine with a slightly bitter finish. The malt really holds up well here and keeps the beer very drinkable despite noticeably aggressive hopping.

All in all Troegs Hopback is a very smooth, almost syrupy ale, with LOTS of flavor. Simply put, it's smooth and sweet, with a crisp citrus & pine hop bite. Personal: 8.5/10 and for an amber ale: 9/10.

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