Worthwhile French Beers: Ninkasi IPA

20 12 2009

Nnkasi IPA

It’s been a while since I’ve done a Worthwhile French Beer post.  Not for lack of tasty French beers, but mainly for lack of patience for taking tasting notes when I’d rather be playing Cribbage or MarioKart.  Being a big fan of the IPA (India Pale Ale) style, I definitely wanted to record this one, though.

Ninkasi is a brewery/brewpub based in Lyon, with another location in  St. Etienne.  It is named for the Sumerian goddess of beer.  And they have not let her down on this one. 

Pouring it out into glasses, we noticed the beer was slightly cloudy, though it is likely that this has more to do with our storing the bottle on its side than anything the brewers intended.  However, the cloudiness does indicate the presence of yeast in the bottle, which in another life Nick would have harvested and cultured for his own brewing purposes.  Nonetheless, the color was a beautiful light caramel, with a bubbly, off-white head.  The floral hop nose gives way to a sweet, medium-roasted malt flavor and smooth mouthfeel, which segues effortlessly into a nice, sharp hop finish whose bitterness lingers, but doesn’t overstay its welcome. 

We were pleasantly surprised at how good this beer actually was, which makes me eager to try some of the other offerings from Ninkasi.  Or maybe even check out the brewpub sometime.  Could be time soon for a weekend in Lyon…

Originally published on Croque-Camille.

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