Tropical IPA Beer Tasting II

Tropical IPA

It’s Friday and it’s time to relax! My wife and I are, once again, celebrating the return to warmer weather with a quartet of Tropical IPA themed beers!

So, please, go get your favorite beverage, sit down, kick back and enjoy as we do our tasting!

Our first beer is…


Tropical IPA

BEER: Mango Cart Mango Wheat Ale
BREWERY: Golden Road Brewing – Los Angeles, CA
ABV: 4%
MATT: 4/5
DANIELLE: 3.25/5

LOOK: Gold and slightly hazy

SCENT: Mango all day

MOUTHFEEL/TASTE: Nice balance of mango fruit juice and carbonation. Some citrus is here as well.

FINAL REFLECTIONS: If you’re gonna do a fruity beer, this is how you do it. It’s sweet but not to the point where it’s sending you into sugar shock. It doesn’t taste artificial. If I had one gripe, it would be that the drink needs some bitter hops or maybe some spice to finish it off. Perhaps adding some Tabasco Sauce or Pepper Flakes would make this a 5-star beer…but I digress. This is a spectacular tropical fruit beer and insanely crushable.





Tropical IPA

BEER: Here Comes Mango IPA
BREWERY: Belching Beaver Brewery – San Diego, CA
ABV: 6.6%
MATT: 3.5/5
DANIELLE: 3.25/5

LOOK: Gold and slightly hazy

SCENT: Grapefruit, orange zest, hops

MOUTHFEEL/TASTE: Slightly thick mouthfeel. I can’t taste mango at all except maybe on the back end. Mostly citrus.

FINAL REFLECTIONS: This beer makes a promise it doesn’t seem to be intent on trying to keep. It advertises the mango as being the key flavor but it’s completely absent on the nose and you can’t get it on the tongue except, perhaps, on the very back end — and, even then, the bitter hops mow over it, destroying anything you might be tasting on the finish. Very strange. That said, it’s a decent IPA otherwise.





BEER: Brew Free or Die Tropical IPA
BREWERY: 21st Amendment Brewery – San Leandro, CA
ABV: 6.8%
MATT: 3/5

LOOK: Gold and slightly hazy

SCENT: Pineapple, banana, other tropical fruit

MOUTHFEEL/TASTE: Slightly thick mouthfeel. There’s nothing on the tongue. I am reminded of those “Hint” water bottles where you BARELY get what’s advertised. It’s very little fruit and a lot of carbonation.

FINAL REFLECTIONS: This feels like a beer that was made before the craft beer explosion took off and brewers were able to mess around with different hops to make things a bit more “tropical”. There’s nothing here that would suggest anything tropical for the taster and that’s a shame. It’s not a bad beer, it’s just bland.





BEER: Gold Cliff IPA
BREWERY: Kona Brewing Company – Kailua-Kona, HI
ABV: 7.2%
MATT: 4/5
DANIELLE: 3.75/5

LOOK: Gold and slightly hazy

SCENT: Tropical fruit, hops

MOUTHFEEL/TASTE: This is a good West Coast-style IPA and is reminiscent of Dust Bowl’s “Tomorrow’s Clear”. There’s a nice tropical fruit sweetness to it offset by just enough bitter hops.

FINAL REFLECTIONS: I like this beer a lot — if only it had that deep complexity “Tomorrow’s Clear” does that would send it over the top. That said, this is one of Kona’s most enjoyable offerings.


FINAL THOUGHTS: Another decent tasting — though a couple beers really fell short of the mark for us. It was still a solid outing with Kona and Golden Road winning the day for me.




NEXT WEEK: We review more brews from Paperback Brewing!

Leave a Reply