Dogfish Head Aprihop

7% ABV bottled

Sometimes, a beer connoisseur becomes obsessed with locating and trying a beer not because it’s highly regarded, not because you suspect it’s good, but simply because you can’t get your grubby hands on it. This is what happened to me with Aprihop. I saw it in stores in early March or so, and since I adore Dogfish Head and (cough) fruit beers, I knew I had to try it. Unfortunately, and for whatever reason, I didn’t quickly hop to and purchase some and seemingly just a week later it was out of circulation. I had squandered my chance. It hurt even more when friends would tell me they had tried it and really liked it.

Over the last few months, I would get tips that certain bars, restaurants, or stores had it in stock. I’d travel to check them out, but all the tips ended up being false. I’d occasionally even be at bars and see Aprihop listed but the bartender would quickly snatch the beer menu from my hands realizing he’d given me an old one.

I had thus given up hope of ever having the Aprihop and had just resolved myself to try it in spring ’09. And then last week I found myself at a fairly innocuous Tribeca bar which had “Aprihop” chalked on their wall menu. I didn’t believe it.  (I also fucking hate colored chalk wall menus.  So goddamn hard to read in the dark!)

“You don’t really have Aprihop do you? You’ve been too lazy to change the menu since March, huh?”

The bartender curiously checked the fridge–they did have Aprihop!

Only one problem, the refrigeration unit had just blown out and all the bottles were warm. Seeing my face drop in sorrow–was I thwarted yet again?!–the bartender quickly improvised.

“Order something else first and I’ll throw an Aprihop on ice for ya’ honey.”

Nice. Twenty minutes later, I was finally drinking the hard-to-find beer. It’s not exactly spectacular, it certainly wasn’t worth the wait, but it’s still good, and it’s incredibly interesting. Nice smell like very fresh apricots. The taste is incredibly sour. Not as bad as Dogfish Head’s Festina Peche, but tart nonetheless.

Very complex. I thought it tasted like the Sixty Minute with hints of apricot and, sure enough, I soon noticed on the bottle that they themselves consider this beer to be an IPA. You rarely see fruit beers this complex and bold. Most are either super-fruity overcarbonated wheat beers that taste like soda pop, or lambics ala Lindemans that don’t taste like beer at all. Not to sound misogynistic, but this ain’t a fruit beer meant for chicks. OK, I guess that did sound misogynistic. But I didn’t mean it. I’m a nice, sensitive guy! I mean, I drink fruit beer for Chrissakes!!

B+

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