Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2012 California IPA Tournament: Round 1, Heats 1&2

Happy New Year! Just what you need to help you get over your hangover- reading about beer.  In case you need a reminder, here are the rules and regulations.

Just to remind you, we're following ASP rules for the tournament.  As such, the rules for Round 1 are as follows: 12 heats of 3 beers.  Heat winners jump to Round 3, where each has its own heat (i.e. Round 1 winners are not randomized).  2nd place beers in Round 1 move to Round 2, where each has its own heat.  Round 1 losers are randomized (to prevent rematches) and placed in Round 2.  Rounds 2 and 3 are elimination rounds, so from Round 1 to Round 3 we will whittle the field from 36 to 12.

In each heat of Round 1, each taster ranked the beers 1-3; the winner received 3 points, 2nd place 2 points, the loser 1 point.  Point totals were then summed, highest point total wins.  The maximum score possible = 15 points, minimum = 5 points.

Heat 1:
Hangar 24 Columbus (Redlands), $4.85/22 oz, 7% ABV, 9.38 NSP, 8 points
Nectar Ales (Paso Robles), $9.59/6-pack, 6.7% ABV, 14.87 NSP, 10 points
Speakeasy Big Daddy (San Francisco), $9.89/6-pack, 6.5% ABV, 13.98 NSP, 12 points

Andy: 1) Speakeasy; 2) Hangar 24; 
3) Nectar Ales
Brendan: 1) Nectar Ales; 2) Speakeasy; 
3) Hangar 24
Brent: 1) Nectar Ales; 2) Speakeasy; 
3) Hangar 24
Matt: 1) Speakeasy; 2) Nectar Ales; 
3) Hangar 24
Samer: 1) Hangar 24; 2) Speakeasy; 
3) Nectar Ales

Not many comments on this heat.  Someone said Nectar Ales felt malty.  Probably Samer because he couldn't keep himself from talking his way through each heat.  I agreed with the verdict- I thought Speakeasy had the best hop flavors combined with a light body.

Heat 2: 
Rubicon (Sacramento), $3.99/22oz, 6.5% ABV, 10.59 NSP, 7 points
21st Amendment Brew Free or Die (San Francisco), $9/6-pack, 7.0% ABV, 16.57 NSP, 10 points
Port Wipeout (San Marcos), $4.99/22oz, 7.0% ABV, 9.12 NSP, 13 points

Andy: 1) Port; 2) 21st; 3) Rubicon
Brendan: 1) Rubicon; 2) 21st; 3) Port
Brent: 1) Port; 2) 21st; 3) Rubicon
Matt: 1) Port; 2) 21st; 3) Rubicon
Samer: 1) Port; 2) 21st; 3) Rubicon

Notice that everyone voted identically, except Brendan- this began a long, very consistent string of Brendan opting for maltier IPAs, which Rubicon certainly was, as both Samer and Andy commented.  There were a lot of attempts to blindly identify these.  Matt thought 21st was Green Flash West Coast (wrong), and then changed that to Sierra Nevada Torpedo (wrong).  Andy said 21st was Speakeasy (wrong, but at least close geographically).  Brendan said he'd never had any of them before (wrong).  Buzzkill Brent just said he didn't like any of them.  I agreed with the verdict again, opting for Port over 21st in the end due to Port's lighter body.


  1. Wrong, wrong, wrong. This is the reason why I did not mention much throughout the tourney. The more I said the bigger chance for me to be wrong.

  2. I love to talk a lot. It's fun to blab on and on until I start spewing crap out of my mouth that even I disagree with. I am, after all, an igpp gentleman.