When it is beer article writing time, we choose our beer source differently each month. This month we went to the nearby beer store and purchased a beer that could have easily been grabbed from any of our brew team’s refrigerator.
This month we are focusing on All Day IPA from Founders Brewing Company of Grand Rapids Michigan.
We poured our 12 ounce “samples” into imperial pint glasses. An immediate rush of fine bubbles rushed to the surface as it was poured leaving a perfect head of dense foam. The liquid itself is a beautiful pale golden color with just a hint of amber tones. Tiny bubbles hung on tight to the sides, but continued to release from the bottom surface of the glass.
The nose of this brew is reminiscent of a fresh flower garden with tons of emphasis on citrusy fruits. Orange and grapefruit are the most common descriptors our team used with pine being mentioned as well. All the fine citrus notes and fresh hop tones works so nicely with a very pleasing yeast scent and the all-important bready malt characteristic. This is what hop heads crave (we know because we are all guilty as charged)!
The flavor of the All Day IPA is packed with a gentle yet obvious hop character that works so well with the fruitiness the yeast attributes. With a mere 4.7% alcohol by volume, it is crucial that any one component of this beer doesn’t overwhelm the other senses. The way the malt, hops and yeast all coexist is the reason this beer is found in the personal stock of many brewers, at least on our team.
Great yeast flavor, malt backbone is evident but certainly not aggressive, and the hop bill (measuring 42 International Bitterness Units) is maximized to perfection to create a great IPA flavor profile without the common side effects of IPA’s i.e. extreme dryness, bitter, over hopped.
The finish is soft, and lingers in flavor. When it’s all said and done, it is a very refreshing libation that keeps on giving.
On to the makers; Founders Brewing Company started back in 1996 and was renamed just a year later to Canal Street Brewing. At the time, their label proudly boasted breweries of old that once resided on Canal Street in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Just above the black and white picture of the Canal Street breweries was the word “Founders.” This eventually caught on, and is now used as the brewing company’s brand name.
Founders has gone on to win several national beer awards from prestigious events like the World Beer Cup and the Great American Beer Festival. Their brewery and a few of their beers rate near the top on popular beer sites such as Ratebeer and BeerAdvocate.
The brewery’s tap room deserves a visit if in the Grand Rapids area. What awaits you inside is a large bar room and an impressively long bar. Seperating you from the outside, is a series of glass panel doors that fortunately were open on the day we visited just a month ago. On the other side of the opened doors was a very inviting outdoor patio area that made you feel as though you’re in your best friends back yard. Back inside, a large stage separates you from the brewery windows that overlook a beautiful collection of stainless steel tanks where the magic happens!
With a food menu consisting primarily of appetizers, soups, salads and sandwiches made with locally baked bread, we are confident you will find a beer, or two, that pairs well with each dish. It certainly helps that they offer 12 to 14 different brews at a time including a hand pulled selection just to entice. A large company store meets you upon exit and too, deserves a visit. Cutting edge merchandise for a class act brewery!
FINAL WORD: Exceptional session pale ale, and a great brewery worthy of a beercation!