Did you know Yazoo Brewing of Nashville, TN does Hop Projects? I didn’t, until about a month ago. But they do, and apparently they do a lot of them. I got a few bottles of Yazoo Hop Project 81 on a recent trip to Nashville as a matter of fact, and while the bottle just calls this beer Yazoo Brewmaster’s Series Hop Project, you have to look a little closer to see which one.
This is batch 81 which I can see in the Bottled On Date field, although I can’t make out the bottled on date. To get more information you have to head over to the Yazoo blog, which first of all tells me that they are now on Hop Prject 82 already, and that Hop Project 81 had two bottlings, on December 9th and 29th of 2014. So pretty fresh as I sip in Early March, 2015.
Normally, this is the part where I let the brewery tell you something about the beer and then I tell you about it, except I’m not going to do that today for reasons you will soon discover. So, here’s what I thought of the beer first:
Yazoo Hop Project 81 pours to a pale golden color with a moderate head of creamy foam and a very, very citrusy nose that just screams fresh lemons. Taking a sip, I get crisp, biscuity malt up front with just the slightest hint of caramel followed by an explosive citrusy hoppiness that’s again very lemony but also a tad resiny and at the last very, very bitter. The malt is present but it doesn’t predominate and the hops really tell the story here. Excellent refreshing beer, Sorachi Ace hops perhaps? The lemony quality is surely there, s well as a really massive bitterness at the last.
OK, so I can easily see why they brewed two batches of this beautiful beer. Here’s the part where I let the brewery describe the beer, and the reason I’m doing it now is that as I am often wont to do I went in blind when I actually tasted the beer. I do this so as not to have any preconceived notions. And darned if I wasn’t right about the Sorachi Ace hops, although to be fair I think they are one of the easier varieties to identify.
This brew is an India Pale Ale by style, but that is where the similarity to most IPAs ends. Each consecutive batch of Hop Project is brewed with a different blend of spicy, aromatic hops, never using the same blend twice. It’s a hop-head’s dream come true!
For this, the 81st in the series, our own Brandon Bingman used Magnum, Sorachi Ace, Palisade, and Willamette, dammit.
Alcohol content is said to be 5.7% by volume and IBUs vary but are at least 75 according to Yazoo. A six-pack was running just $7.99 at Kroger, very reasonable indeed. We don’t get Yazoo beers in Georgia, but I do pick some up whenever I’m in Nashville. You should too!
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.