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Skinny Daddy gives the tongue a workout

Alpine's supercharged IPA aimed at hopheads

Alpine's Skinny Daddy IPA debuts for the occasion of  Toronado's seventh anniversary.
Alpine's Skinny Daddy IPA debuts for the occasion of Toronado's seventh anniversary.

I spent several hours last week making excruciating decisions as I tried to work my way through a pretty special tap list Toronado assembled for its seventh anniversary.

Place

Toronado

4026 30th Street, San Diego

There were few wrong answers among the Russian River, Firestone Walker, Allagash, and assorted Belgian handles on offer — I needed way more time with them. Regardless of what I chose, I would go home from the North Park taproom feeling the weight of missed opportunities.

Place

Alpine Beer Company

2351 Alpine Boulevard, Alpine

Of course, I couldn't fail to try the debut of a new IPA from Alpine, arguably the finest IPA producer in the county. Toronado says Alpine brewer Shawn McIlhenney made Skinny Daddy in honor of its seventh, collaborating with recently departed Pizza Port brewer Devon Randall, as well as plenty of Citra, Simcoe, and Mosaic hops.

My hazy pale pour had little foam yet loads of fragrance — chiefly floral notes riding on top of that fresh load of hoppy aromatics. On first sip, not a lot of flavor came to the front, giving me little to focus on other than beer's genuinely creamy texture. I appreciated that, but only for a moment. Only for the length of time it took my taste buds to register the hops.

They rolled in like a swarm of manic bees, pretty much bursting on my tongue and dancing so actively I thought, This must be what it's like to put a lit sparkler in your mouth. That initial creaminess turned exceptionally dry, exposing those up-front aromatics to any part of my mouth still willing to sense them. Then, just like that, they were gone, nothing but a slightly dank aftertaste.

Ensuing sips were much like the first, the full pint giving my tongue quite a workout, and I wondered if I should follow it up with an amber, just to check whether I'd become malt-blind for a minute there.

Quite a different IPA experience than Alpine's famously balanced Duet, Skinny Daddy compares closer to the assertiveness of its Nelson rye IPA, though with a less distinguished character. It's more an experiential kind of beer, testing out some possibilities and almost forcibly reminding you that hops made this beer coast what it is. Pretty well played for a special-occasion beer, though definitely not for the meek.

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Alpine's Skinny Daddy IPA debuts for the occasion of  Toronado's seventh anniversary.
Alpine's Skinny Daddy IPA debuts for the occasion of Toronado's seventh anniversary.

I spent several hours last week making excruciating decisions as I tried to work my way through a pretty special tap list Toronado assembled for its seventh anniversary.

Place

Toronado

4026 30th Street, San Diego

There were few wrong answers among the Russian River, Firestone Walker, Allagash, and assorted Belgian handles on offer — I needed way more time with them. Regardless of what I chose, I would go home from the North Park taproom feeling the weight of missed opportunities.

Place

Alpine Beer Company

2351 Alpine Boulevard, Alpine

Of course, I couldn't fail to try the debut of a new IPA from Alpine, arguably the finest IPA producer in the county. Toronado says Alpine brewer Shawn McIlhenney made Skinny Daddy in honor of its seventh, collaborating with recently departed Pizza Port brewer Devon Randall, as well as plenty of Citra, Simcoe, and Mosaic hops.

My hazy pale pour had little foam yet loads of fragrance — chiefly floral notes riding on top of that fresh load of hoppy aromatics. On first sip, not a lot of flavor came to the front, giving me little to focus on other than beer's genuinely creamy texture. I appreciated that, but only for a moment. Only for the length of time it took my taste buds to register the hops.

They rolled in like a swarm of manic bees, pretty much bursting on my tongue and dancing so actively I thought, This must be what it's like to put a lit sparkler in your mouth. That initial creaminess turned exceptionally dry, exposing those up-front aromatics to any part of my mouth still willing to sense them. Then, just like that, they were gone, nothing but a slightly dank aftertaste.

Ensuing sips were much like the first, the full pint giving my tongue quite a workout, and I wondered if I should follow it up with an amber, just to check whether I'd become malt-blind for a minute there.

Quite a different IPA experience than Alpine's famously balanced Duet, Skinny Daddy compares closer to the assertiveness of its Nelson rye IPA, though with a less distinguished character. It's more an experiential kind of beer, testing out some possibilities and almost forcibly reminding you that hops made this beer coast what it is. Pretty well played for a special-occasion beer, though definitely not for the meek.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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