The Full Review
Naming a new beer is a struggle in the crowded world of craft beer. There are so many options out there, and each and every name has to be unique without stepping on the toes of other beers. So when 10 Barrel Brewing released their Sam IPA, you can probably guess what happened. Sam — named for the Simcoe, Amarillo, and Mosaic hops in the beer — got on the wrong side of a very large Northeast brewer. Now the beer goes by Joe, or the beer “formerly known as Sam.” But don’t be thrown off by its simple name. Joe packs a flavorful punch. Joe is a 6.9 percent alcohol by volume beer that sits at 70 IBUs. It’s aggressively hoppy from the first sip and rounded out with a subtle malty sweetness. American hop flavors dominate, so think pine, citrus, and grapefruit bitterness. Lively carbonation lightens up the feel of the beer. It’s definitely something for hop heads that fits the profile of the craft beer friendly landscape of the Pacific Northwest. After the hop flavors subside a little, there’s an earthy flavor that sticks with you. So when you want a reliable IPA, think Joe.