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APA vs IPA

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APA vs IPA

Postby Henry Vilas » Thu Aug 02, 2012 2:07 pm

I've read more than one discussion on the perceived diiferences between American Pale Ales and India Pale Ales. The distinction usually revolves around hoppiness and assertiveness of flavors. Yet I've had APAs that have stronger flavors than some IPAs. For example, I was recently in Appleton visiting friends who have a small deli/grocery store that specializes in local and regional products. Bob poured me an O'so Hopdinger and when I tasted it I assumed it was an IPA. Later I saw that the bottle was labeled an APA. I guess the naming is up to the brewmaster.
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Re: APA vs IPA

Postby green union terrace chair » Thu Aug 02, 2012 3:25 pm

The qualities of some beer types are clear, others seem really subjective. There's a pretty blurry line between IPAs and APAs, in my opinion.
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Re: APA vs IPA

Postby rrnate » Thu Aug 02, 2012 3:27 pm

Yeah, I think traditionally APAs have lower abv numbers, whereas IPAs are always 6+. However, that's one of those lines (certainly along with overall hop assertiveness) that seems to have become blurred.

I was in England recently and was surprised that their craft beer movement is way more subtle than here - no beers w/ huge abv, no crazy strong/weird/unusual flavor, etc. Good to know we still go bigger than them where it counts.
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Re: APA vs IPA

Postby david cohen » Thu Aug 02, 2012 10:02 pm

rrnate wrote:I was in England recently and was surprised that their craft beer movement is way more subtle than here - no beers w/ huge abv, no crazy strong/weird/unusual flavor, etc. Good to know we still go bigger than them where it counts.


I love how American craft brewers have pushed the envelope....the only thing I love MORE are the flavor profiles of good English Ales. While they might be "tame" by American standards, they have flavors that American craft brewers can't obtain using indigenous barley and hops. The last time I spent a week drinking my way through London and her environs was one of the best weeks of my life:)
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Re: APA vs IPA

Postby gargantua » Thu Aug 02, 2012 10:12 pm

Henry Vilas wrote: Yet I've had APAs that have stronger flavors than some IPAs. For example, I was recently in Appleton visiting friends who have a small deli/grocery store that specializes in local and regional products. Bob poured me an O'so Hopdinger and when I tasted it I assumed it was an IPA. Later I saw that the bottle was labeled an APA. I guess the naming is up to the brewmaster.


Hopdinger is a good example of an APA. Its bitterness stands out. IPA's typically have more of a malt balance, so that is how you can usually tell them apart if you don't have a label in front of you. There is a continuum within the styles that leads to some overlap, but mostly citrus/bitter =APA 90% of the time.
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