Tuesday, 25 April 2017
During a recent weekend foray to Ontario's beautiful Georgian Bay region, I found myself running dangerously low on craft beer. To replenish my stores, my friends and I headed into the nearest town to visit their beer vendor. While the shores of the Georgian Bay are something to behold, the selection at this particular beer seller was not. Faced with desperate choices, I picked up a quartet of 473mL cans of Laker IPA. The Laker mark, brewed in Kitchener, ON by the Brick Brewing Co., has the dubious distinction of being the value ale on which many Ontario youths cut their teeth. However, never having seen their IPA before, I resolved to give it a whirl. The fact that contained just 4.8% alcohol--way low for the style--was a red flag, but one I was willing to overlook.
The beer, once poured, looked quite agreeable. It was a hazy brown-auburn colour, with a thin cap of off-white head. Its aroma proved to be a blend of dank bitterness and a sweet, metallic twang. Rarely do understrength beers taste stronger than they are, but the sweetness displayed in the front end of Laker IPA gave it the illusion of considerable booze, despite its relatively anemic percentage. While the beer smelled fairly bitter, the taste didn't kick up its heels with IBUs in any significant manner. Rather, the bitterness was largely drowned by saccharine elements.
At the cottage, where I downed my first three cans of Laker IPA, I was extremely critical of the stuff. I took the fourth home for sober reflection. While that can still left much to be desired, it wasn't the total swill that I had derided on first impression, but I still wasn't wild about it. Too sweet by far, wildly under-strength, and insufficiently bitter: three characteristics that all but ensure I will not be revisiting this ale again.
Rating: 4.5 out of 10.