I was invited to head over to Old Chicago for a pint of Deviant Dales IPA, an Oskar Blues special beer that is usually only available in their taproom. For the next couple days the beer is also available at all Old Chicagos in Colorado…if they haven’t run out yet. I’m sitting in the downtown Old Chicago right now actually, and they still have a good amount of the beer, so head on down. The beer will be replaced after Valentine’s Day.
Let me tell you a little about the beer. I wasn’t sure if it’s a hopped up version of the regular Dale’s Pale Ale, but I had a pint of that last night just to try and warm up and see how the two beers compare. They are very different. The Deviant is a beautiful red-ish orange color with a nice thick beige head that lasts a long long time. The beer is very hop forward, contains 5 varieties of hops and is dry hopped with a variety that’s normally used for bittering – Columbus hops. The aroma has some honey and citrus but I think is dominated with more of an evergreen earthy smell. So far, it’s very attractive. The beer tastes amazing, it reminds me of some of my favorite IPA’s in Portland. It feels very Pacific NW. I’m tasting pineapple and grapefruit with a very strong bitter finish that is surprisingly well-balanced with a caramel malt sweetness. I would have thought this beer to be a major hop bomb, and while it may have the potential to destroy my palette, it is one that I can definitely see myself drinking 3-4 of through the course of the night. Which brings me to the alcohol content. The beer sits at 8%. What? The beer certainly tastes like a strong IPA, something around 6% or so, but 8%?!!? This thing is definitely not JUST a hopped up version of Dales, you know what I mean? The beer is surprising very very drinkable for that alcohol content. I’ve mentioned it before, I’m burnt out on IPA’s at this point in my life, but this beer is inspiring and has the potential to convert me back. This is a very good beer, and any hophead would love it. Very high recommendations.
I became a member of the Old Chicago World Beer Tour today. I have expressed my hesitancy of Old Chicago’s in this post, and there are elements of the place that I’m still hesitant about, but after meeting with Ryan, one of the managers here I think they are doing a couple unique things that I’d for sure be willing to come back for. I’m new to Old Chicagos, I moved here from Portland and as far as I know, there are no Old Chicago restaurants out there. They’ve got 110 beers, 30 of them are drafts and about 20-25 of those are from good microbreweries and regional breweries. There’s also a handful of regular beers including Guiness, Coors, etc. I will let you read all about the World Beer Tour on your own, but basically it’s a program to get you try the 110 beers. There are all sorts of incentives to do so and you can take as long as you want to finish. What I liked hearing about though are the mini-beer tours, which happen nine times a year. Generally there are 6-12 beers, centered around “holidays,” that you are supposed to try, but these beers are not necessarily a part of the regular rotation. Deviant Dale’s IPA is a part of this mini-beer tour thing. The next tour will be geared for St. Patrick’s Day, Old Chicago will exclusively have a beer from Odell called Mercenary Double IPA and an Old Chicago Bitter Leprechaun ESB. Old Chicago will often have a beer available long before it hits public markets outside of that brewery’s taproom. I can drink to that.