Jul 28, 2020

Flying Dog Tropical Truth Imperial IPA

It’s been a spell since new content has appeared on the (t)rusty Barley Blog. I hadn’t actually given the site a thought in the past couple of months other than to update to the latest version of WordPress or check out an older review for background on a beer.

I had moved on, as we all do eventually, to other endeavors.

And then something odd happened. A package from Maryland’s Flying Dog showed up on the front steps last week. This bottle of Tropical Truth Imperial IPA was certainly, most definitely unexpected. I haven’t received a sample from one of my favorite companies in a couple of years – so this arrival was a surprise to say the least. As a fan of the brewery and their tasty, tasty beers, I felt obligated to publish my thoughts on this latest treat.

Flying Dog’s The Truth has been available year-round going on seven years now. It’s a darn tasty brew that I’ve enjoyed several times over during that time. It’s big and bold, just the way I like an imperial IPA. I, as a fan of The Truth, wouldn’t think of changing anything about it.

Always keen on creating something new and even more flavorful, however, the brewery saw fit to add some fruit (mango and passionfruit puree) to the base recipe. Flying Dog has never been one to sit on their asses and let things continue status quo, so it’s no surprise that tinkering with a popular brew was inevitable.

So, is Tropical Truth any good then?

I, typically, am not a fan of overly fruit-juicy IPAs. I feel they take away from the soul of what an IPA should be. This one does not do that. Flying Dog have magically kept the expected pungency and moderate bitterness of a good IPA experience fully in tact while adding a well-balanced array of fruit flavors – tangerine, mango, citrus. Each element of the IPA works in sync with the rest, never demanding or overtaking the spotlight.

Tropical Truth ends up drinking exceptionally well for a big beer (8.7% ABV, 50 IBU), leaving a gentle hop tingle, lasting fruit echo and alcohol warmth in the chest for a bit after each swallow. Do I like it better than the original? I’m not sure. I guess both are exceptionally well crafted and, given the day, could be better than the other.

Both are just damn good beer. Period.

This is a review of a promotional sample from the brewery.