Reviewed on 01-31-2017
Rating B
Style IPA
Produced In United States
ABV 4.5%
Availability Limited

Perfect For

All-Day Sipping, Asian Food, Boozy Beach Trips, Relaxing After Work

The Full Review

If you’ve been to any of the Hawaiian islands, you’re likely aware of POG. If not, what you need to know is that it’s a juice blend of passionfruit, orange, and guava that was popular in the 1970s and 1990s. Most importantly for the purposes of right now, you need to know that POG flavors make a great beer. Kona Brewing Company’s Hanalei Island IPA is a juicy POG beer with Azacca, Galaxy, and Millennium hops. The tropical notes from the Azacca and the citrus from the Galaxy blend right in with the strong fruit juice flavors. A stinky, almost sticky smelling passionfruit aroma is the most obvious, followed by the guava, and then a taste of citrus to round it out. The light hop touch (40 IBU) puts some bitterness into the beer without scaring off people who are bitter averse. The result is an easy drinking beer that will leave you wanting more — and at 4.5 percent alcohol by volume, why not have a couple? It’s an enjoyable, sessionable, and downright lunchable beer for when you can’t let a buzz get in the way of good flavor. It’s easy for hop heads to dismiss IPAs light in alcohol and hoppiness as “beginner.” Hanalei will definitely appeal to segments of the population who don’t normally head to the craft beer section. It’ll also appeal to craft beer lovers who can’t have a heavy hitting 9 percent alcohol by volume at any moment of the day. And beach lovers. This is a beach lovers’ beer. Hawaii doesn’t experience winter like the mainland does. But it’s no wonder that Kona Brewing released their fruit-forward session IPA in the middle of the northern half of the country’s coldest months. The smell alone is enough to transport you to the islands and make you crave some POG.