Quick Hits: The Shape Of Hops To Come

J. R. Shirt, January 08, 2015

Tonight I drank a can of Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co.'s The Shape of Hops to Come, a double IPA, and I'd like to quickly tell you about it. Originally, I had different plans for the week – I wanted to tell you about my trip to Tørst, the beer bar in Brooklyn, NY, opened by Daniel Burns and Evil Twin Brewing's Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø. I will still tell you about such things, but next week. I also wanted to tell about the things I think about tweeting from the bathroom in the morning and the alternate reality that tweeting such things might create. There is a beer in that alternate reality but at the moment I cannot recall what that beer is exactly.

Quick Hits:

The Shape of Hops to Come is named after the 1998 album The Shape of Punk to Come by Refused.

The Shape of Hops to Come is brewed with Apollo, Newport, Simcoe, Topaz, and Citra Hops.

The Shape of Hops to Come smells amazing.

The Shape of Hops to Come may have gone straight to my head.

The Quick Hits portion is now over (because by nature, Quick Hits are over quickly).

This is not a beer I fell in love with immediately. In fact, this is the last can from the four pack I purchased awhile pack, which is to say this is the third can I've had as I shared one with a man named Jon from Ohio.

It is this third can that has me both excited and sorrowful. I am excited because while the smell has always blown me away, the taste has taken some time for me to wrap my head around. And today I took that first sip, from an IPA glass mind you, and immediately got it (which is why I'm telling you about it instead of those other things I told you above that I planned on telling you about).

I am sorrowful as a result of this third can because I most likely won't be able to get another until July. Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co. has The Shape of Hops to Come on a six month rotating schedule. I will try and get some tomorrow but chances are it will be gone from the shelves as the availability seems to start to peter out around Christmas. According to the Neshaminy Creek website, it will return July 1, 2015.

In the meantime, Neshaminy Creek has released Blitzkreig Hops, which based on the description from their website, sounds delicious: “Essentially, it’s an English IPA brewed like a West Coast American IPA, and we feel like we’ve finally hit our target this go round. It’s brewed with all English malts like Maris Otter, and hops like Admiral, Phoenix, Pilgrim, and Target, and is bitter, dank, and has a ton of citrus, apricot, and peach-like qualities in the flavor and nose.”

I probably won't find Blitzkreig Hops in my local beer store just yet, as the cans are scheduled for a mid January release, but I'm excited to see if it can hold me over until the next round of The Shape of Hops to Come.

The Shape Of Hops To Come, Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co. (3.52 BAR, 112 Style +)

Appearance = 4.75/5

Orange and copper in color. A finger of cream-colored head with nice retention after the pour. Nice lacing down the glass.

Smell = 5/5

Huge floral, pine, and grapefruit aromas. Huge. My daughter could smell it from across the room and said it smelled good. Then she asked if it was beer. I said it was. Then she asked if she could have a beer. She is three. Well, three and three quarters if you ask her. I called to Wife to get the Child a beer. She, the Child not the Wife, became fearful of my quick willingness and backed down. I marked a tally on the chalk board under the heading “Dad.”

Taste = 4.25/5

Like the nose – resinous pine, floral notes, and grapefruit – like a powerfully bitter grapefruit rind juice. It was this “juice” aspect that I didn't catch until today. And man is it nice. Lots of beers can hop bitter your face off. This one does that but with a delicious, true, grapefruit juice flavor that sneaks in as the resinous bitterness starts to tail off and before the aftertaste bitterness starts to creep up.

Feel = 4/5

Nice body. Soft and almost airy for the medium body. The upfront bitterness adds some fullness to the feel. The tail end thins just a bit.

Overall = 4.25/5

This beer really grew on me. Glad I didn't ignore it after that first can didn't knock my socks off. Amazing aroma and great mix of big time bitterness and juicy citrus.


J.R. Shirt likes quick hits, long titles, and "juicy" beers. He also likes this podcast called Drinking With Shirt, of which he may or may not be the host. Actually, if he was the host he would probably hate it because he is one of those people that has trouble liking the the things he creates. That's a lie. He loves all of his creations. Listen here at BeerGraphs or iTunes. Follow on Twitter and Untappd @beeronmyshirt.