IPAs abound as of late here at the Daily Beard, drawing on the bright strength of the wonderful little brew flowers to fight the soul-devouring Winter woes. Thankfully, these IPAs have not only been powerful, they’ve been tasty as well, and flavor is paramount when it comes to beer. But, close behind flavor is something less tangible – the brew-vibe that radiates from each crafty concoction. There needs to be a bit of zest, a touch of moxy to transform a tasty beer into a damn tasty beer. Six Point’s Hi-Res is such an example. A boosted version of its Resin IPA, Hi-Res is an 11% ABV, 111 IBU monster full of flavor, panache, gumption, spirit, and tongue-kicking strength (as well as any other old-timey term you’d like to throw in there). So strap yourselves in, fasten your drinking helmets, and keep your arms and legs inside this brew train while it’s in motion. It’s beer time!
The aroma begins with a slap to the face from a hand of massive pine and tropical fruit bitterness. Passion fruit, mango, and grapefruit clings to the nose, contributing fresh bitterness interspersed with moments of sweet fruitiness. Crisp pine adds a cutting edge of hops, while hints of ultra mellow caramel malts chill out in the background of each breath. The savory strength of the malts are quickly lost amongst the bitter tides, especially as deeper breaths bring about hints of juniper and ever-richer pine – similar to diving head first into a gin-soaked pine tree. These blooms of mega-hop arrive fast and disappear just as quickly, keeping you and your nostrils on your toes. At the end of each breath, citrus peel and fresh vegetation arrive and linger beneath the nose for an extra moment or two before fading rapidly. Visually, it pours a thick, golden peach – forming a thin and fizzing head of white fluff.
On the tongue, layers and layers of flavor cascade across your palate. Beginning with a pine tree kick, thick and slightly syrupy waves of juniper and tropical fruit fill the mouth. The fruits are fresh and prickly, pushing mildly sweet juices of mango, passion fruit, grapefruit, and oranges across your taste buds before bringing down a hammer of pure bitterness. An edge of alcohol rides shotgun with the initial bittersweet surge, leaving your mouth ‘atingle and glowing with refreshing heat. Following the bitterness, cracker malts arrive to soothe your tongue, allowing sweet and savory caramel-coated bread crust to mingle with the other flavors – subduing the bitter hints but also ensuring each flavor sticks to every corner of the mouth. These moments of malt mellowness occur with each drink, bridging the gaps between the hop-bomb bitterness. As the flavors begin to diminish, the multiple layers collapse in on themselves and form a gleaming diamond of lasting cracker and orange zest. Despite the thick feel on the tongue, it drinks with a crispness that ensures each drink is a bright and shining affair.
Six point’s Hi-Res is nothing less than a syrupy pine tree crammed into a can. Massive pine and juniper notes inhabit the aroma and flavor, while prickly tropical waves crash over the tongue with sweet and bitter citrus peel zest. Notes of green vegetation provide a freshness that seems to make the bitterness even more potent. Mingling amongst the multitude of flavor layers are sweet and savory blooms of caramel and cracker malts, struggling for and achieving recognition in the middle of torrential hops. At 111 IBU and 11% ABV, this is a can of liquid napalm that somehow manages to remain immensely flavorful and controlled, albeit with a lovely hop bite. It’s a bit pricey, but its taste more than makes up for it.
This beer would be best enjoyed over a slow late Winter or early Spring evening. It’s full of powerful heat and bitterness to keep the chills at bay, but the sweet malts and fruits ensure a lovely sipping drink as the ice thaws. Be sure to look for Hi-Res, lest it hunt you down and show you why it earns an A.
Lasting Strength: 10/10
Overall: 9.3/10 A