The tasting panel was comprised of Owen Ogletree, Steve Holzman, Aaron Wallace of Highwire Lounge and Trappeze Pub, Daniel Pittard, Richard Miley from Catch 22 Gastropub, Dean Graves, Gail Graves, Pete Dasher and Ian Meents of Southern Brewing Company.
From the BJCP American IPA style description...
American IPA: A decidedly hoppy and bitter, moderately strong American pale ale, showcasing modern American or New World hop varieties. The balance is hop-forward, with a clean fermentation profile, dryish finish, and clean, supporting malt allowing a creative range of hop character to shine through.
OG: 1.056 – 1.070
IBUs: 40 – 70
FG: 1.008 – 1.014
SRM: 6 – 14
ABV: 5.5 – 7.5%
Here's how the blind brackets went down, with Southbound Brewing's Hop'lin IPA taking "best in show"...
Our Bling Tasting Notes:
Light hop aroma; citrus; kiwi; a hint of lemon; well-balanced; light, lingering bitterness; pleasant; subtle.
Piney; hops are upfront; hoppy finish; good malt balance; hint of pepper; hint of malt sweetness; hop flavor is restrained; woody hops; citrus and grapefruit emerge after a bit; tasty.
Red Brick HopLanta - RUNNER UP
Slight fruit nose; metallic hint; pine-like bitterness; citrus hops; spicy hops; grassy; herbal hint; bright and crisp; bold hops.
Monday Night Slap Fight
Earthy hop note; nice, lingering bitter finish; herbal, tannin-like hops; hints of citrus; hops are in background behind malty character.
Light pine tannin hops; very drinkable; a touch earthy; great color for style; hops are pleasant but light; soft, appealing, moderate carbonation.
Southbound Hop'lin IPA - WINNER OF THE CHALLENGE
Sweet, malty notes; pineapple; hint of alcohol warmth; balanced malt/hop profile; guava; fruity; wonderful after-taste; light piney hop note; medium body; a touch murky with chill haze; delicious.
Jekyll Hop Dang Diggity
Clear and bright; tropical fruits; kiwi; earthy hint; light bitterness in the finish; smooth hop notes; mild bitterness; pleasant balance.
Lonerider Hoppy Ki Yay
Hop aroma is mild; slight metallic flavor; hops and malt seem restrained; lots of fruity esters; seems malt-forward with interesting fruit complexity.
Photos by Gail Graves