Jun 20, 2018

Old Bust Head Sonic Charm

I was scanning the beer shelves at a local shop back in May when I spied Old Bust Head’s logo on this can of Sonic Charm. I figured that I hadn’t picked up anything of theirs in quite some time, so what better way to get re-acquainted than with a double IPA. This 7.9% ABV brew is crafted with an enticing blend of hop varieties (Amarillo, Citra, Centennial, Chinook, Magnum) I certainly had high hopes going into this review. Unlike the beer’s namesake, a 2-time winner of Fauquier’s Gold Cup steeple chase winner, this one isn’t quite of that same pedigree.

Sonic Charm isn’t a bad beer. In fact, it does present a tasty array of flavors with grapefruit, tangerine peel, pine, grassy hop notes and a good malt back bone. Despite the company’s website proclaiming “little to no bitterness” within the beer, it does provide a solid bite that I enjoyed. The problem with this double IPA is that it’s lacking oomph. There’s no pungency to the pine or lusciousness to the fruit flavors. A double IPA should have that little something extra. This beer is just sort of… there.

I really wanted to like this beer, and to a degree, I still do. I just wish it had a bit more attitude to it (and a slightly less drying finish). The flavors here are just about right, but the beer just lacks any sort of personality to say, “Hey drink me so you can open up another can and repeat.” There are other regional Virginia beers that present better than this particular double IPA. Seek those out.