7 April 2016 - Best Beer HQ

Mash Palace Uranium Breath IPA review

Mash Palace Uranium Breath IPA review

Always on the hunt for the latest and greatest craft beers and brew pubs in Auckland, New Zealand, your intrepid reviewer headed over to the North Shore in the weekend to check out a brand new watering hole called ‘The Beer Spot’.

Aptly named, this awesome new brew bar in Northcote (which bills itself as your new “tappy place”; I love all the beer puns) has more than 40 craft beers and ciders on tap. With so much to choose from and so little time (my long-suffering wife was the sober driver) I tried two new beers: a blueberry sour by Hamilton brewery Good George (I’ll review that later), and this one, the delightfully named Uranium Breath IPA by local microbrewery Mash Palace.

I’d be lying if I told you that I’d heard of Mash Palace ever before. Nope, I chose this beer not on the brewer’s reputation but entirely on the name of the beer. Uranium Breath IPA. That sounds pretty cool, right? Unsurprisingly, the dude behind the bar told me it was one of The Beer Spot’s top sellers.

Let’s see if this IPA suits its glorious moniker.

Blurb about the beer (from the Mash Palace website): Drawing on a great history of US and NZ clashes, Uranium Breath ‘embottles’ the spirit of one of our most iconic victories. In contrast, where our esteemed Prime Minister argued in a prevailing effort to keep the ‘green stuff’ away from our shores, we search for ways to increase our intake of a similarly pungent green stuff.

All US hops combined with all NZ grain provides a bouquet of pine and citrus, which is backed up on the palate accompanied by caramel sweetness for balance. Uranium Breath IPA finishes dry and clean.

It’s morally indefensible to use this many hops, but we do it anyway.

ABV: 6.6%

Tastes like: Caged fury. Like a wolverine in a kennel, a tiger in a cat cage, or a great white shark in a fish bowl, Mash Palace has managed to harness the beast and even domesticate it.

As they say, it does indeed contain a morally indefensible amount of hops – as evidenced by the beer’s intensely pungent aroma – and yet it never quite feels overwhelming. It tastes hoppy, alright, but it’s not resinous as hopped-up IPAs tend to get when their brewers throw everything but the kitchen sink in to making them.

I would have taken more notes but, frankly, I was too busy enjoying this one. It was good enough to make me forget the regret I was feeling for only having enough time to try two of the beers on tap at The Beer Spot. I’d chosen well. This beer works.

Is it the best beer ever? Uranium Breath IPA certainly ticks all my boxes – it’s bold, it’s beautiful, and it’s even got a really cool name. I highly recommend it.

Also check out: Liberty Brewing’s Knife Party IPA is a similarly grunty IPA that got top marks from me.

Craft Beer New Zealand / review /

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