New on tap at our friendly local brewpub is Class III IPA. Carver Brewing Co. tapped it Thursday.
Class III IPA is brewed with more than two pounds of hops per barrel, according to Carver's Michael Hurst. The India pale ale uses centennial, warrior, palisade and simcoe hops.
Carver's claims more than 100 IBUs for Class III, putting it in league with bruisers like Ska's Decadent Imperial IPA (99 IBUs) and Steamworks' Conductor Imperial IPA (82 IBUs).
Class III, named for the category of river rapids, pours a nice reddish-orange color with a small white head of foam.
Some IPAs taste of grapefruit, and Class III is emphatically one of them. The grapefruit taste seems to be a common note in Carver's beers. It's not like the cherry-orange citrus taste of Decadent, or the challenging straightforwardness of Conductor. It's grapefruit, period.
For the claimed 100+ IBUs, it's quite drinkable. It is not at all a struggle to finish a glass, as it can be with imperial IPAs. The hops wash over your palate like a big glass of grapefruit juice.
Class III is certainly a worthy contender in the imperial IPA fight. Give it a solid B.