Sunday, February 7, 2010

Victory HopDevil Review

Happy Super Bowl Sunday, and in honor of this great American holiday of sorts, I thought we should look at a local brew, the Victory HopDevil. It is an India Pale Ale, has 6.7% Alc/Vol and is brewed not too far away in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. And I don't like it. Just need to get my personal biases out of the way before people start to get angry.
Victory claims that HopDevil is "menacingly delicious," but I really think it is just menacing.
Before coming to this conclusion, I did give this beer a fighting chance. I spent a considerable amount of time trying to find all the flavors in the complex taste. I sipped, swished, gulped and cringed my way through one bottle, and not finding any of the sweet malt or citrus floral flavors I was assured that this beer contained, I thought I should give it another go. Maybe the overwhelming bitterness that sticks in the back of my throat after each swallow making me cringe for an extra 10 seconds, would grow on me, so I drank another one, with similar results. Half way through the third bottle, which I was swallowing as quickly as possible just to make the misery end faster, I dumped a cracker in the beer....because I thought it would absorb the bitterness, obviously. Then, because that didn't work, I threw some frozen raspberries in it, because they have a way of carrying cheap champagne,  and I thought the raspberries would do similar things for this horrible beer. Needless to say, they did not.
What I did next was really an appalling waste of beer, and I am ashamed of myself...but not really.
I decided I would do an experiment to see if anything I could put in this beer would make it taste better. I tried some more frozen fruit, a piece of chocolate, and some candy corn. I of course waited a set amount of time to let the flavors meld and mix, and to let the fruit thaw out, and then tasted each in a very scientific manor. The results were disappointing. The fruit did nothing, the chocolate did less than nothing, and the candy corn made it worse, which in fairness to the beer, is probably not its fault.
The bottom line is, to me, this beer tastes the dregs of another beer, a Guinness more specifically, and I never want to drink it again. Ever. I am just not a fan of the very "Hoppy" flavor. But that is just me, maybe you like hops, and if so, this beer is for you. If you have tastes like mine though, and you want to try something from the extensive Victory offerings, I would go for the Victory Prima Pils. It is much lighter, and will not interfere with the taste of the nachos and any other snack food you are sampling during tonight's game.
Photo Credit: Victory

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