I was lucky enough to visit Four Winds Brewing last week and try a number of fantastic beers. One of those was their new Vexillum imperial IPA. I brought a bomber bottle home to get the full experience and here are my thoughts.
Bottle: 650 ml bomber
ABV: 9%; IBU: 100
Description: Vexillum, an ancient Imperial Roman symbol for strength and nobility. This insistently hoppy IPA reveals notes of Grapefruit and Melon while finishing bitter, yet affably balanced.
The beer pours out a hazy, deep amber colour with a finger of head that left behind respectable lacing. The carbonation level is spot on for the style.
The nose was citrus with hints of grapefruit, pineapple and tropical fruits, with a touch of sweet malty aroma
Imperial IPAs tend to be quite bold and abrasive on the pallet, but this one was about the most well-rounded double IPA I’ve ever tasted. It was sweet, resinous, and malty with citrus hop tang and a hint of licorice root. The aftertaste has hop bitterness, but a lot less than one would expect from a beer with 100 IBUs.
This beer took me by surprise. I was expecting a serious hop bomb, but this was a smooth and exquisite experience. It’s deceptive, though, because where you are drinking an Amnesiac, you know you are drinking something serious boozy, with this, you could be a few bottles down without noticing and be heading for a serious hangover!