Friday, March 28, 2014

Ommegang, Hop House Pale Ale

From a local brewery in Cooperstown, NY comes a limited edition, Belgian-style, dry-hopped ale entitled “Hop House” released in December of 2013. Aside from being highly aromatic (due to their dry-hopping method of adding hops after fermentation), this Belgian-style ale rivals most with its notes of citrus and fruits and a drying, hop forward finish. The result is a burst of hoppy aroma that balances its maltiness.

Built on an historic hop farm of 136 acres, Ommegang Brewery has certainly captured the essence of hops in their Hop House limited edition beer. Back in the 19th century, Cooperstown, NY was the epicenter of U.S. hop production. That being said, Ommegang Brewery has quite a reputation to uphold in brewing some of their “hoppy” beers that are obligated to live up to their heritage.

I found this beer to be extremely enjoyable as a stand-alone session beer. Although they food pair it with salads, seafood, or spicy foods, this Belgian-style ale had much to offer in terms of independence and character. It has all the appealing elements you could want from a pale ale minus the typical, standard over-hoppiness I have found most pale ales seem to possess. Up front is a very citrus and/or floral aroma which is followed by a very smooth, hoppy finish. I was pleasantly surprised by the flavor and overall taste of this beer as pale ales and IPA’s are not usually not my “go-to’s”, but this particular pale ale has a lot to offer in terms of its overall color, aroma, and taste. This limited edition beer from Ommegang has perfected balance of hops and malts to provide a delicious edition to their already flourishing repertoire.

So for the fans of Belgian-style ales, I would have to recommend Ommegang’s Hop House as one of the beers you must try, not only because it’s a limited edition, but because it is an easy-drinking, perfectly hopped ale on the side of very enjoyable.

Personal Rating: 8.5/10

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