Clash of the Brew Titans
A Review of I Hardcore You by Mikkeller
Posted on 3/15/2012 by Chops
                   
Delicious
There are some brews in the better beer world that are simply frightening, no matter how honed your palate may be. BrewDog out of Scotland is well known for such insane creations like Sink The Bismarck, a 41% Imperial IPA. Yes, you read that right. Mikkeller, the mad gypsy brewer from Denmark, is also very well known for his wild and maniacal creations. You would think that getting these two titans together would warp the space time continuum. But alas, we were spared a brew-pocalypse when they combined forces to create a collaborative concoction. The result was I Hardcore You, a blend of BrewDog's Hardcore IPA and Mikkeller's I Beat You IPA. But the crazy didn't stop there, they decided to dry hop it further, several times, enough to lose count. Needless to say, this beer is slightly intimidating.

In the glass, this beastly brew has a semi hazy burnt orange coloration. It comes with a frothy white head that dissipates at a normal pace. The aroma was actually much tamer than I was expecting. It has a rich piney hop smell that is very well balanced with a sweet caramel malt. There is also a charred woody note resting underneath that gives this beer a campfire like vibe. To be honest, I was anticipating a relentless hop assault, but this beer ended up having a very welcoming introduction. I can only hope that it's not a wolf in sheep's clothing.

Much to my surprise, I Hardcore You ended up being a highly palatable brew. I found a rich and complex flavor profile consisting of caramelized malts, toasted breads, some herbal notes and a meaty roasted quality. Oddly enough, the hop profile doesn't reach full strength until the middle ground where it crisscrosses a declining malt profile then carries through the exit. As the malt dissipates, the hops gain a warmth to their taste, much like you would find with brown liquors. The finish has a sticky quality and leaves behind a toasted hop bitterness. This IPA is surprisingly smooth and drinkable considering its origins.

Overall, Mikkeller and BrewDog's I Hardcore You collaboration IPA is a damn tasty brew. I was pleasantly surprised by its balance and meatiness, definitely a unique taste among the style. I can certainly recommend this beer to all hop heads and imperial fans. I think it goes without saying that this beer is beyond novices, so drinker beware. It has a lot of great flavors, but also a lot of bite. As with any Mikkeller or BrewDog creation, you have to respect the beer before drinking it. That goes doubly so with this beauty.

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I Hardcore You by Mikkeller
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