Shploing!! (7% ABV)
Omnipollo (Brewed at Dorchester Brewing Co.)
Mango S'mores India Pale Ale
This beer is interesting from start to finish. First, we've got the name — Shploing!! (yes, the exclamation points are included). Then, we've got the fact that I literally had to google this beer before taking a sip because there was stuff floating in it (My search was inconclusive. I drank the beer anyway). And finally, this beer comes from a brewery without a home.
Omnipollo was first described to me as a "gypsy brewery." They come up with beer ideas, travel the world, and then produce those beers at other brewery facilities. Some Omnipollo beers are partnerships while others are just Omnipollo beer brewed in another brewery. You can read more on their story here.
I can normally spot their beers at my local craft beer store thanks to a distinctive style that uses bright colors and no wording over the illustration, but I almost passed over this one because it comes in a can. Every other one of their beers I've purchased came in a 500 mL bottle, but I'm glad a sales rep at Hop City directed me toward this beer (even though it was pretty pricy).
Speaking of which ...
Shploing!! pours a hazy pale yellow with white particles that float down to the bottom of the beer. I've poured two of these beers, and one retained a slight head while the other poured with almost none. Neither pour had much lacing. There's little activity as far as visible carbonation.
The beer has a bright, citrusy scent that you want from an IPA, and the taste has a fruitiness under the slight bitterness of the hops. There's also a slight vanilla undertone that tones down the bitterness, bringing this into the realm of what feels like mix of a bright, "traditional" IPA and a hazy IPA.
The mouthfeel is amazing — the hint of vanilla and lack of carbonation gives it a creamy texture.
In drinking this beer, I took tasting sips and larger gulps to see how those experiences compared. With the savoring sips, I could taste a bit more of the bitterness in the beer, while the vanilla came through more in the larger tastes. Both pleasant, but also interesting to compare.
The can says this beer was brewed with marshmallows, graham crackers, salt and lactose sugar with mango and vanilla added. I can see hints of the mango, I think, through the fruity tone of the beer, but mango can be such a mild flavor at times that I don't find it really hits you that hard. As far as the first three ingredients, I don't get a lot of those flavors, but it's an interesting idea.
Also, I had no idea what the lactose sugar would do, but it looks like that addition can bring out the creaminess in a beer. I fully support this application and frankly love what it did to this beer.
I'd buy this beer again. With tax, it was about $19 for a 4-pack, which is steeper than my usual price point, but cheaper than the beers I buy when I'm out for drinks, so I'm OK with it. The downside is you don't get the "s'mores" taste, which I was looking forward to, but since it's such a tasty IPA I can't be too hard on it.
I'll also add that this beer was battling my love for Terrapin's Krunkles, which are extremely fruit-forward beers, and Trim Tab's Dreamscicle IPA — a small batch that's infused with orange peel and vanilla bean. I won't say it beat out the Dreamscicle, but I didn't hate it in comparison.
Overall rating: 4.8/5
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