Look-A-Likes Aren’t Always What They Seem – Avery India Pale Ale

Human nature is fascinating. There are those that need routine – they find what they like or what works for them – and stick with it. While other folks like to deviate from the norm – they take chances and sometimes win big, but sometimes lose big as well.  I’m a little of both. I like to be adventurous and try new things, but I also really enjoy my “go-to” or favorite things.

Left Hand Brewing Company
Beer drinking shines a light on this for me.  I have a narrow lane I travel down as far as beer taste.  I am compelled to try different beers from time to time but usually stay on the course of a Hop Head.  When I occasionally veer off, it’s at the prompting of a friend.  Like when (not so) Big Jim just raved and raved about Left Hand’s Milk Stout.  This had my interest; because my buddy Ray brought me some Left Hand 400 pound Monkey awhile back (we both enjoyed them).  However, I had caution with the Milk Stout because stouts are traditionally dark beers, with a rich taste not in line with my own.  But then again, this is Jim, who many accuse of being my doppelganger. I HAD to give it a try. So Gemini (Jim and I) are hanging at the next party, crack open a few left handers and we’re both moved with big reactions – his of bliss, mine of horror.  Big Jim couldn’t be happier; I couldn’t be farther from happy. I contemplated how I was gonna choke this down so I didn’t lose my man card. I made it halfway down the pint glass before I acquiesced, declared I was less-than manly and merged back onto a familiar, hoppy, road.
Big Jim On The Left, Me On The Right
I most likely headed for something like a Swamp Head BigNose, Terrapin Hopsecutioner or Cigar City’s Jai Lai IPA.Brewed in Tampa, Florida, Cigar City’s Jai Lai offers a distinct blend of citrus and floral hopiness bite. Can’t really decide if it is a good looking can or not, but this was my go-to IPA. Delivering 7.5 ABV, it’s a good mid-to-high-level drinker. Kinda like Dale’s Pale Ale, but leaning much heavier to the citrusy side.
Cigar City IPA
But… one day, headed down to Alligator Point for a weekend this past summer, I just knew ABC was going to have my beloved Jai Lai. The North Side ABC has it, why wouldn’t the South Side? When looking for that distinctive can, I was slightly fooled by this “other” green can. The background graphics are similar, but it was missing the distinctive orange lettering. I looked around the aisles and in the coolers and found no Jai Lai. Having accepted that I wouldn’t find my go-to, I decided to venture out and try something new. I commenced with a build-a-six and selected two Dale’s, two Hoplantas and two of the other green cans – two Avery India Pale Ales.  This looked like Jai Lai, boasted similar stats and quite frankly, was what was available.
Avery IPA
I already had a six of Sweetwater Yellow Label (aka IPA), so I only needed that extra six, and could wait until it was cold. Later… at first crack, the offering from Avery was delicious.  Already skeptical and fearful of being out of my taste lane, this beer made easy work of calming me down.  Brewed in Colorado, from guys who drink what they make and make what they like to drink, Avery IPA is a really, really good beer. Somewhat of a doppelganger to Cigar City’s offering, I’ve actually come to prefer the Avery.  Side by side, most would say they’re the same… but it’s the little differences. While they share similar characteristics, the 6.5% ABV Avery’s taste blend leans heavier to the floral side.  All in all, I’d rank this beer second on my list of everyday beers (with Dale’s topping the list).  So… the moral of the story? If you see a guy that looks like me, dressed in a bikechain.com kit, it’s prolly just Jim after Thanksgiving; AND be sure to venture out of your comfort zone (ahem, Mark) when selecting your next beer; AND be sure to give Avery IPA a try, you’ll love it. Bikechain

Source: Hops and Grinds

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