Black Plague Brewing - Tony Hawps Birdhouse IPA
Black Plague Brewing in Oceanside, CA brewed and released this 6.5% ABV California style IPA in the summer of 2019. It was brewed in collaboration with Tony Hawk and Tony Hawk's brand, Birdhouse. We've had Black Plague Brewing before, and every time the immediate word that comes to mind is "unabashedly flavorful". Much like Escondido's Stone Brewing, Black Plague pride themselves on releasing strong and flavorful beers that form a mosh pit of hops with every sip. This beer is no different. It's a 900 spin of an IPA that's both light in its body and upfront in its flavor. We tried it with some spicy homemade nachos... we'd suggest you do the same.
Appearance: Does the pour make you think of anything other than a California style IPA? We didn't think so. It did have some unfiltered yeast floating around, which was surprising as it's not marketed that way, but we found it didn't detract from the tasting experience.
Smell: Pine and citrus waft up from the initial pour. One of the things we liked is that the malt doesn't take a backseat to the hops. Rather it announces its arrival to the skate park alongside their hoppy friends. The combination provides a malty sweet and hoppy bitterness smell that's quite pleasing.
Taste: Pine, citrus, and malt provide the upfront flavors of this beer. The sweetness of the malt is cut by the bitterness of the hops halfway through the tasting experience. The bitterness lingers through the back half, lingers at the end, then slowly fades away. However, the bitterness isn't quite as overpowering as we're making it out to be. It's there, it's standing proud, but it isn't taking over the party.
Marketing: Black Plague Brewing has a gothic aesthetic as a brand. The Tony Hawps can is no exception. On one side, you see the Black Plague logo (the Plague Doctor), and on the other side you have the Birdhouse logo. This beer isn't as serious as the black plague but it's sure damn tastier.