If you don’t like IPAs, try this

By Rebecca Firkser
Updated July 24, 2018
Credit: Photo by @4nosesbrewing via Instagram

I don’t love IPAs. Beer nerds out there are likely about to shout,"There are different kinds of IPAs, you goon!"So I will add that I don’t love most IPAs served at bars and restaurants. Oftentimes, the only IPA on a menu is super-hoppy and musky, like the drawer of someone trying to cover up the smell of weed with pine-scented air freshener. This is frustrating. The solution? New England-style IPAs.

What many casual drinkers would probably think of as a “classic” IPA is likely a British or West Coast IPA. Bitter and yeasty, they couldn’t be more different from a New England IPA. New England IPAs are so different from what most people associate with the IPA label, they might as well be called something else entirely. In fact, the first time I had one it was poured into a glass for me at a dinner party, and I didn’t know it was an IPA until I asked to see the can. This style of beer is unfiltered, meaning it appears hazy or cloudy in the glass, sort of like skin-contact wines. They’re creamy and floral, and sweet without being cloying.

My current favorite New England IPA is Four Noses' Orange Velvet. They call it a Milkshake India Pale Ale, which is a method of blending lactose sugar right into the beer. Some beer advocates might call Milkshakes another distinct style of IPA, but Four Noses calls it “a new and unique twist to the New England-style IPA.” Sadly, this beer is hard to find outside the brewery, which is in Broomfield, Colorado. It's been featured on Tavour, a beer app that specializes in craft beers you can’t find at the store. If you happen to be in the area, drink as much as you can.

As for more readily available New England IPAs, there's Sierra Nevada’s Hazy Little Thing, which was launched late last year, and Samuel Adams’s New England IPA, which is available by the can at most beer shops and at many bars.