Disclaimer: no fruit was harmed in the making of Wicked Weed Juiceless IPA. Now, that’s probably no surprise given the name of the beer, but I felt it was worth a mention, especially considering what the brewery says about the beer on their website:
Wicked Weed and Creature Comforts love the citrusy, crisp, hoppy flavor of fruited IPAs, but we wanted to put a unique twist on this delicious style. For this collaboration beer, we cracked the juicy code without using any fruit. Is it hoppy? Of course. Smooth? Certainly. Refreshing? Always. Juicy? THE JUICIEST. Made with fruit? NO. ABSOLUTELY NOT. All the fruit flavor, all from the hops. This beer IS what it ISN’T.
See? If they feel the need to point it out, I can too. Actually, the emphasis surprises me. Citrusy hoppy beers are age-old here in America, going back to at least the late 70s. Tropical fruity IPAs are newer, relying on modern hop varieties to achieve their flavor, but they’ve been around for a while, too.
You may have noticed that Creature Comforts of Athens, Georgia is mentioned. That’s because Juiceless is a collaboration brew. Creature Comforts is famous for its Tropicalia IPA, another fruity (but non-fruited) little gem. Recently that beer has become quite scarce, and I’ve seen at least two brewers recently rationing it to one six-pack per customer.
Wicked Weed Juiceless IPA has an alcohol content of 7.7% by volume and I paid ^4 for an 11-ounce glass at Taco Mac. That is actually not unreasonable, but it runs $5.99 for a half liter in bottles. That, to me, is outrageous.
My glass of Wicked Weed Juiceless IPA arrived a bright ornage color with a thin head of creamy foam and lots of pineapple, mango and grapefruit in the nose. Taking a sip, I got a thin maltiness up front, then my mouth was bursting with the same tropical fruit from the nose and more bitter grapefruit flesh and rind flavors, the rind especially in the long dry finish.
This is indeed a very tasty India Pale Ale with lovely fruit character. I enjoyed it a lot, but would I buy it again? Probably not, no. Oh sure, I might order it up if I were at the brewery in Asheville, and maybe I would pick up one bottle to side by side with Tropicalia. The price of $6 for a half liter is just ridiculous for an IPA, and considering I can get 72 ounces of Tropicalia (a six-pack) for about $11, or less than two bottles (about 34 ounces) of Juiceless IPA, I will be passing this one by despite the fact it’s so tasty.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.