Brew Review: Detour

28 Sep

Brew:  Detour

Brewed by: Unita Brewing Co. (Salt Lake City, UT)

Style: Double IPA (9.5% ABV)


A brew from the Mormon heartland that is Salt Lake City.  I had heard rumblings that this somewhat backwards state had finally started to let its people brew beer above a certain ABV percentage, bout time I say.  I also heard however, that actually finding those stronger beers in Utah was harder than it was in other states.  Needless to say this beer had traveled a lot by the time I opened it.  I’ll start at the beginning.  It was brewed in Salt Lake City, was shipped to Chicago, I bought it in Chicago.  I returned home to Minneapolis with it in my possession and then went on a road trip out to Colorado to go skiing with some friends with this brew in tow.  Needless to say it might have been easier to find it in Denver and then just drink it at a much fresher date, but I brought it out on this trip to share with some ski buddies after a long day on the slopes.  This beer has been to more states than probably most Americans. 

Well on to the beer.  The Detour poured out a clear amber or copper color, a really solid looking double IPA.  You could tell that there was plenty of malt sweetness to back up what was an expected generous portion of hops.  Very clear which was noted.  There was also an inch of slightly off-white head that rose up from the brew making this a really good looking beverage.

The smell was full of hops.  The most resonant aroma was pine with some lighter grassy hops in there but mostly pine.  As some others of the group said, “I used to think that this kind of beer smelled and tasted like soap and gin.”  Gotta love the new drinker’s first takes on IPA’s.  There were some sweet sugars that poked their head up through the foam but I gotta give the W to the hops in the aroma here.

The first taste was filled with bittering hops.  Not in an overpowering or sticky way but in a great double IPA left-hop to the chin.  The bitterness was not extreme and you could notice the balance that the brewers found with the grains and sweet malts.  It was deceptively light and smooth while tasting and it never once felt as if I still had half a sip sticking to the roof of my mouth like some other heavy IPA’s are wont to do (looking at you Stone brewery). 

This is a double IPA all the way through.  Great hop character but with the cranked up hops comes the increased sweet malts as well which were well balanced.  Not as floral or fruity as maybe I have been spoiled on (Abrasive) but still everything had its place and it all fit together well.  Solid brew, maybe not worth the whole cork and cage and probably 7-9 bucks you’ll pay for it when there are plenty of other really good double IPA’s out there.


Final Grade: B+


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