Sometimes We Just Stay Home and Drink #24: Stone Sanctimonious IPA, Traditional West Coast IPA, Escondido, California
Date: June 23 , 2019 —
The Story— Stone talks about their use of “retro” hops — Amarillo and Simcoe– though they do note that the “retro” here only goes back to the turn of this century. Still in their words “Sometimes taking a step back and appreciating what we already have is another form of innovation.” This kind of a good old IPA was pretty common 15 years ago but has been swamped by New England and Milkshake sweet-accented unfortunates. Hooray for the good (15-year) old days and hooray for Stone.
The Beer– Flavorful IPA with what do indeed seem like traditional hops in this fast moving market. Citrus and citrus peel, with some oil and and the grapefruit and pineapple flavors grow as it drinks and warms. You have to be OK with citrus flavors to enjoy this, but you don’t have to contend with the tropics or wild-grown acids.
The brewery gives absolutely no information about IBUs, which is a bit ironic since there seem to be of them. But high IBU claims in beers like this tend to run to puffery and Stone’s silence is at least honest. We’d rate the IBUs with a precise and scientific “lots.”
The bad news is that this beer is part of their Hop Worship series – to our knowledge it’s not scheduled for re-release and if you find it it’s 9 months old. That would make it well past prime, though our sample was several months old and we enjoyed it hugely. A beer this strong and hoppy will stay drinkable a long time, but won’t have the brace of fresh tasting hops the brewer intended.
We tasted Stone’s Idolatrous IPA from the same series when it was about as old as a Sanctimonious would be now. I thought it was magnificent — still showcasing the berry fruit of the Mosaic and the sweet almost tropical fruits of the El Dorado.
Value — Good to very good. Stone rarely overcharges for their beers. You don’t have to buy bombers of them anymore either.
Values: “fair” is a good beer at an above market price, “good” is worth the money, “very good” is a bargain, and “excellent” is a steal.
Sometimes we just stay home and drink beer — hundreds of them over the course of the year as we hunt for a new favorite. The searching for the beer of the day never stops, so for a while, there will be fewer travel-oriented posts and just some to-the-point descriptions of beers we’ve enjoyed.
We’re often asked to share our tasting notes on over 33,000 beers; this blog is in answer to those requests. Not all our notes, though. The great beer writer Michael Jackson admirably followed the Thumper Rule, and we’ll try to do the same. (“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nuthin’ at all.”) All the beers we post are from the top half of our ratings and most are from the top quarter. Of greater value, we think, are the stories behind the beers, and we try to give you enough about the brewery, the style and the places to find great beer to help you on your own beer journeys. At CulturAle Press we try to write books and publish posts that will help you “Drink Well and Travel Safely.”