Monday, August 11, 2014

Valiant Brewing's Alpha Drive Double IPA


Double-Plus Good
Recently I was enjoying a sunny afternoon on the patio at one of my all-time favorites, Ramos House Cafe, and I noticed a double IPA on the menu. Now, like all right-thinking folk, I love an IPA, but would a double IPA mean double love? Thinking that it might pair well with a bowl of my current menu go-to, Chef John Q's great take on Hoppin'  John, I decided to find out if Hoppin' plus hoppy would equal happy.

One super-hoppy-but-super-clean sip later and this medium bodied pale ale had me. It also played nicely with the spice in John Q's soup and a side of Scotch quail eggs. The hops and the sunlight intensified the summer day. I couldn't have stopped the smile on my face.

I'd had super hoppy ales before, but the flavor was a brute. It wasn't smooth like the ale that I enjoyed that day. This was no "mouth full of hops". I had to ask my server the source of that mysterious double IPA. She informed me that it was Valiant's Alpha Drive and wrote it down on the back of a guest check for me. Of course they are local to me, right here in Orange County, CA. Chef Q likes to keep it local. I thanked my server, and tipped her well, but I'm not sure I could have paid enough for the name and source of my new favorite glass. Find it if you can.


Hoppin' John Q Soup



Scotch Quail Eggs