SMOKEHOUSE 21’s CANNED BEERS: CALDERA IPA

So that story you heard, the one about British colonialists over-hopping their ales to create a new breed of super-beer, the India Pale Ale, so that their precious cargo would survive countless trips to the subcontinent, helping them, in turn, stave off the scurvy?

Turns out that it’s not all that true.

In fact, it looks like brewers on Britain’s rainy isles first came up with the idea for the simple sake of experimentation, a sort-of “Why Not?” approach.

Needless to say, the idea of over-hopping stuck. And as anyone who lives on the rainy “isle” of Oregon knows, you can play around with beer in a variety of ways, but there is one thing you cannot do, and that’s over-hop one.

Caldera’s flagship IPA, brewed in nearby Ashland, certainly has its fair share of hops—its no-nonsense ranking of 94 on the scale of International Bittering Units means the brewers, when brewing, spare us no hops.

But the great thing about these 12-ounce cans is that, bitter as they should be, they’re actually quite malty, caramely and surprisingly smooth and easy to drink.

And, of course, they pair just as nicely with a House-Smoked Half-Chickens as they do with a second can.

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