Switchgear IPA – Sidetrack Brewing
ABV: 7% – IBU: 80
Overall Rating 4.5 of 5 Mugs
NM IPA Challenge Notes: Switchgear IPA was my top pick of flight 1, beers 1-13 in the NM IPA Challenge, Elimination round. Since Switchgear IPA only got 3 votes (one of which was mine), I decided to go back and re-visit in a review format to see if I had completely lost my mind or not. To be honest Switchgear IPA didn’t get my highest numerical rating on my tray (blind taste test). It did however ultimately win my vote for the winner of that flight (1) as my favorite IPA of the group based on drink-ability and repeat-ability. Basically this was the beer I wanted to drink a another pint of, which is all that really matters at the end of the day. Isn’t it?
MrHoppy 4.5 of 5 mugs
Served in a traditional pint glass Switchgear IPA has a golden yellow body with a small foamy white head and a slight haze indicating it has been dry hopped. There is a lot of citrus aroma blended with resinous floral bouquets. Some interesting fruity aromas become present as the aroma dissipates and the body warms a bit (Zoso hops?). The initial flavor is bitter and delicious backed by the clean ale body and finishing refreshingly smooth. Very drinkable, and refreshing like a session while maintaining the ABV and IBU of a true IPA.
I recommend Switchgear IPA to all IPA lovers especially those looking for the NE style flavor and aroma without sacrificing the classic bitter appeal. If you are looking for something with flavor but moderately bitter this IPA is for you.
Definitely a new player in the ABQ IPA Scene for me. Part of the reason I love the blind taste test format of the NM IPA Challenge is that regardless of what everyone else likes, or what the newest and greatest trends are, or anyone’s new favorite brewery etc., you discover your own personal favorite with none of the preconceptions. I hope to see this beer go into distribution as a 12oz can because Sidetrack Brewing might as well be on the opposite side of the state for me living in Rio Rancho. Just kidding, I’ll be back and next time with a growler!