Stone IPA is an American IPA brewed by Stone Brewing, and for the purposes of this craft beer review, the ale was served in an IPA glass from a bottle.
The IPA pours a marigold hue and whose appearance is cloudy from the abundant fine sediment suspended in the glass. It’s topped by a tall stack of puffy off-white foam that shows excellent retention. Patches of sticky lace cling to the sides while a soapy collar rounds the glass.
The aroma wafts the nose with a fragrant scent of pine and tropical fruit.
The palate begins with a neutral taste of pale malt and transitions to a juicy bite of grapefruit and lemon that lingers through the finish. A flash of tropical fruit is picked up on the swallow. Lightly toasted bread ties the palate together.
Its feel is relatively smooth with a medium body and moderate carbonation. Crisp, dry finish is clean with moderate astringency.
Its appearance is solid, its aroma is quite pleasant, and its feel is spot on. The palate is pure West Coast style IPA. Pacific Northwest hops run rampant with a light malt balance. Hopheads will certainly be pleased. Everyone else will appreciate this as a flavorful well-crafted brew that’s refreshing and quite easy to tilt back.
History Behind The Stone IPA
Stone introduced their Stone IPA in 1997 in celebration of the brewery’s first anniversary. At that time, the demand for IPAs was virtually non-existent but brewmaster Steve Wagner took the British classic and made it his own by amping up the flavor with a heavy dosage of Centennial, Chinook, and Columbus hops.
Initially, the taste of the brew wasn’t as well received. For most drinkers, its hoppy taste was unusual and its bite too harsh. But drinkers eventually caught on and the brew has become one of the quintessential West-Coast style IPAs.
Check out the video below from Stone Brewing President Steve Wagner as he discusses the history behind the Stone IPA.
Stone recommends the following food pairings with their Stone IPA: appetizers of Kimchi, stuffed poblano peppers, shishito peppers, ceviche; southwest, Asian, and Caesar salads; mains of chicken curry, lengua tacos, spicy Thai, salmon, and jambalaya; cheeses of Maytag Blue, Danish Blue, Asiago, Pecorino, and Carr Valley Aged Cheddar.