I don’t think I had ever had Palate Wrecker before this latest batch was released a few weeks ago – Palate Wrecker is now Green Flash’s Spring Seasonal available in 12oz four packs and 22oz bombers throughout Green Flash’s distribution area – the name always sort of turned me off. I know, don’t judge a book by it’s cover (a beer by it’s name?) but every time I saw Palate Wrecker on draft there were a few other beers I wanted to try also, beers that weren’t close to 10% ABV and didn’t imply that they would wreck my palate, so I opted for others instead.
Now that Palate Wrecker is available in bottles I figured I’d give it a shot. The first thing that caught my eye was the brewing process, from a press release Green Flash sent out announcing the beer’s release:
Chuck Silva came up with a new method to make intensely hoppy IPA by performing a double brew to make a single beer. First, there is a single infusion mash and subsequent boil at 65 IBU with Columbus and Centennial hops. Then a second, duplicate mash using the 65 IBU wort instead of water and another 65 IBU boil using the same hop schedule. The result is a higher gravity beer with kettle caramelizing in place of crystal malts, an elevated hop flavor and bitterness that could not be achieved in a single brew.
I don’t know of any other beers made like this, maybe they’re out there, but I’ve never heard of them. In the wrong hands a beer like this could turn out pretty bad, but Chuck Silva knows what he’s doing when it comes to stuff like this.
So the brewing process is cool, but how’s the beer? Not bad, but not really my thing. There are a lot of people that love this beer, like go crazy for it. I’m not a huge fan of sweeter Double IPAs, and while this one apparently doesn’t use crystal malt there’s plenty of carmelization from the double brew. I’ll drink it, but I probably won’t order a second pint when I’m done. It’s plenty bitter but I don’t pick up much hop flavor, the malty caramel like sweetness and bitterness dominate.
I picked up this single 12oz bottle at Bine and Vine for $3.29 (it’s a bit cheaper per bottle if you buy a four pack) and also available in 22oz bottles.