Jul 1, 2016

Schlafly Hop Trial: Enigma

This last bottle of Schlafly’s Hop Trial variety pack uses the same base golden ale as the previous three, but swaps out Enigma as hop in use. So far we’ve encountered a unique hop character, an assertive bitterness and rather shy profile. This time around, we’re greeted with hop traits that are more in line with the modern, fruit-forward beers in the current market.

Enigma Hop Trial is probably the most mainstream of the four beers. I don’t mean to say that it gets lost in the market with your standard flavors — it’s a beer that leans more heavily on the fruitier aspects of the hop variety in use much like many beers on shelves currently do. A smooth combination of tropical fruits mingles with cereal and yeast quite nicely. The beer’s moderate amount of hop bitterness isn’t too big to destroy your palate, but certainly enough to let you know that the beer is more hop-forward than most golden ales.

I believe I’ve said this in all four of the reviews for Schalfly’s Hop Trial pack, but I really do enjoy projects like this. A single base beer served four ways with four different hop varieties gives the average beer drinker an opportunity to experience a multitude of flavors driven by a single ingredient change. I enjoyed all four of beers in this variety pack — each offered something unique and enjoyable.

This is a review of a promotional sample.