Review: Deschutes Brewery Hop Henge (2017) and Red Chair NWPA (2017)

These two Deschutes bottles hit at the tail end of 2017, so we’re belatedly marking them with “2017” — but never mind all that, you should find both readily available.

Deschutes Brewery Hop Henge Imperial IPA (2017) – No longer denoted as “experimental,” this is now apparently a standard-issue release — to the point where Deschutes denotes its year of first release as ’17. For 2017 at least, Hop Henge appears as a crisp imperial IPA, chewy and doughy, but bursting with hops and resin notes. Hints of chocolate and salted caramel add some nuance, though the hugely bitter finish is nothing but hops. One of the best Hop Henge releases in recent years. 8.3% abv. A / $10 per six-pack

Deschutes Brewery Red Chair NWPA (2017) – Briskly hoppy but with a twist, Red Chair is always a beer that takes a step in a different direction. For this year, a very nutty, toasty malt gives the beer its core, a slight mushroom character complementing loads of fresh hops. The finish is bitter but gently citrusy, with hints of savory herbs. Better than the typical NWPA release. 6.2% abv. B+ / $8 per six-pack

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