So, a few days ago, a coworker of mine informed me that a local bar, called “The Hungry Monk” was having a special on Dogfish Head beers the following evening. They were tapping 60, 90, and most importantly, their 120 Minute IPA’s. 120 Minute being one of my wife’s favorite beers, I quickly informed her, and we made plans to go to the “Monk”.
Now, 120 Minute IPA is a pretty special, very unique beer. This is unlike any IPA I have ever had. To produce this beer, it is boiled for a full 2 hours (hence the 120 minute designation) while being continuously hopped throughout the entire boil. It is then dry hopped in the fermentor for a month, and if that wasn’t enough, it is then aged for an additional month with whole leaf hops.
The spec’s on this beer are equally as impressive. Depending on the year, the AVB will weigh in anywhere between 15 to 21%, with a lip curling 120 (coincidence) IBU’s (International Bittering Unit, a unit of measure to gauge the amount of hoppy bitterness in a beer). To compare, a light lager such as Bud Light clocks in at a wimpy (by comparison) 5 IBU’s.
The beer drinks more like a liquor, or cordial, than it does a beer. This is most certainly a “sipping” beer. It has a beautiful pale orange color, with a thin rim of porous head. A nose has a very citrusy, pine note, with a distinct alcohol presence as you would expect. The taste is like a sort of strong hybrid Barelywine rather than an Imperial IPA. Its malty sweetness is very pleasant, and surprisingly drinkable for a beer that is almost 40 proof.
A year or so ago, they had a major issue with the production of this beer (something went wrong with the yeast) and the batch had to be dumped. Demand for this beer was already high, due to its popularity and limited production. Since then, this beer has been almost impossible to find. When is shows up somewhere, it’s gone in minutes, literally, and last night at the Hungry Monk was no exception. We got there 45 minutes after they had tapped the keg, yet, we missed the final glass by almost a half hour. Needless to say, my wife and I were very disappointed. I’m not sure if the fact that we have had this beer before was a blessing or not. Since, we both knew what we were missing. Yet, we got chatting with gentlemen that showed up, to try this beer, having only heard of it, and I must say, he was equally as disappointed as we were.
We managed however, to make the most of our brief childless night out, and ordered a couple of rounds of Lost Abby’s Judgment Day, and some dinner, and still had a very enjoyable time. If you get a chance, you should check out "The Hungry Monk" in Chandler, on the NE Corner of Dobson and Chandler Blvd. Very good beer selection, great wings, and all very affordable. Two thumbs of from both my wife and I.
So keep your eyes out for Dogfish Heads 120 Minute IPA. It’s not cheap (around $10 for a single 12 oz bottle) but I feel, well worth the occasional threat. Even if you don’t want it, if you see it, buy it, and I will gladly buy it off you!