Another fantastic seasonal Keller Door release from 4 Pines. This time a California dream of an IPA.
It seems mere weeks since 4 Pines released their last bottled Keller Door release, the Oaked Baltic Porter. But they’re back at it again, this time with a bold, California-inspired rye IPA.
This West Coast style beer pours a beautiful deep rusty, reddish amber colour with a dirty white head that stays thick and creamy.
The colour of a California sunset
The colour of this beer is a serious knock out. There’s a warm glow to it. It shares some similarities with Two Birds Sunset Ale in that sense, and I’m sure the inspiration comes from a similar place.
4 Pines have nailed the colour that perfectly evokes a balmy summer evening.
Earth and bine
From when the first drop hits the glass to when you take your last sip, the aroma is forceful. You can smell the rye. It smells organic, living and grainy.
There’s strong pine and grapefruit hop aromas too. Also in the mix, quite oddly, is something a little bit salty or smokey like crispy bacon bits. This threw me a bit but it’s a smell which stuck with me throughout the beer. Perhaps it’s a characteristic of the rye.
All these aromas come through in the taste. The rye provides some malty sweetness. However it’s not quite as “candy-like” as described on the bottle, but delicious all the same. The sweetness certainly grows throughout the beer.
For me, the grapefruit flavours come through quite prominently but some pine finds its way onto the palate too.
Bitter but balanced
There are some decent IBUs in this beer but this isn’t the end of the story. The malt bill really works its magic to keep it balanced and, relatively, it doesn’t taste overly bitter.
Have no doubt, there is some bitterness, but it isn’t the be all and end all. The sticky malt flavours and hop bitterness merge together perfectly.
It’s a beer that could be described as endearing. It’s a California beauty; pretty, and intriguing. And the best part? It’s from right here on our gorgeous sky blue shores.
At 7.3% it’s quite big. The warmth from the alcohol grows and grows and toward the end it’s a lovely big, sunny hug of a beer.
It feels lighter in the mouth than it does in the glass and for quite a malty, boozy beer it’s nicely around the medium body mark.
Illustrating the essence of the beer
Again, 4 Pines have knocked it out of the park with their Keller Door bottle artwork. It captures the California hippy, West Coast feel perfectly.Again, @4PinesBeer have knocked it out of the park with their Keller Door bottle artwork. Click To Tweet
It features hops, citrus and flower power motifs up front, with waves, a crisp sea breeze and a deep amber sunset over four pine trees in the distance.
It does what good bottle art should do and illustrates the essence of the beer perfectly. And that typography is spot on.
I didn’t pair this one with any food and I would definitely recommend spending some quality time with this Keller Door beer.
Otherwise, pulled pork or a beefburger with maple bacon would be the way to go, perhaps with some feisty barbecue sauce. You just want to make sure you don’t cover up those sweet rye notes.
Beer style: Rye IPA
Pair with: On its own or with a beefburger and maple bacon.
If you’ve got your hands on 4 Pines West Coast Red Rye IPA, leave a comment with what you thought.