I tried this beer when it first started to appear, at last year's Franciscan Well Easterfest. Then, it was one of the stars of the show for me, but since its bottled release it's been inevitably criticized for its lack of hoppiness, and comparisons with the brilliant Of Foam And Fury left it looking very much like second best.
Undeterred, I approached O'Hara's Double IPA with an open mind and an eager palate.
It pours clear and amber with a white foam and produces a leafy green hop nose, suggesting mint among other herbal stuff. The underlying sweetness has a bit of lime marmalade about it, but things come to life on tasting. The palate is sugary and toffeeish and peppered with candied pineapple and grapefruit.
Despite being a very delicious beer, this DIPA lacks the sharpness and bitter hop attack of a US version of the style which is probably what left many Irish drinkers understandably feeling short-changed by the naming of this beer. Don't be deterred though, this is a very good beer well worth trying, one that I hope stays a permanent fixture on the shelves of the offies and supermarkets around.