Oskar Blues | Deviant Dale’s IPA
ABV: 8% | IBU: 85
I’m a firm believer that a beer is best enjoyed after a bike ride, and while I don’t want to speak for anyone else, I’m pretty sure the folks at Oskar Blues feel the same way. If you want proof, check out reebcycles.com/blog, or simply swing by their brewpub in Lyons on a sunny afternoon and count the number of mountain bikes in the parking lot.
With that in mind, after returning home from a recent bike trip the first beer out of the fridge was a tallboy can of Deviant Dale’s. It was a perfect choice for a few reasons: It comes in a 16 oz can, it’s a rather strong IPA, it’s delicious, and did I mention it comes in a 16 oz can? A good blend of hoppy/malty flavor with a surprisingly clean finish for an 8% ABV beer. The pour reveals a rich amber color with fairly intense hoppy aroma. It drinks very smooth and it doesn’t take much to feel pretty loose.
And boy did I need that. You see, on this trip I learned what happens when you’re flying down a nice, twisty section of singletrack and your handlebars suddenly snap in half. The result is a torso that looks like it took a Pete-Rose-slide into a palette full of cheese graters. I’m actually pretty sure most of my left nipple is still in Fruita, CO, smeared on the trail like a chewed up bite of Vienna Sausage spat out by a bitchy 4 year old. I’ll spare you the rest of the details (you’re welcome), but suffice it to say it was not pretty.
Sometimes you want a beer, sometimes you NEED a beer.
This was actually the first 4 pack of Deviant Dale’s I’ve bought. Even though it released with considerable buzz a couple months ago and it was very impressive the few times trying it on draft, I always seemed to pass it over in the store. After some semi-drunken reflection, I think I know why—the can design is terrible. It looks like a nice, well-intentioned can of Dale’s Pale Ale went slumming one night and get knocked up by a big, burly can of Monster Energy Drink, then they wrapped the poor bastard in a cold-war-era Russian propaganda poster. Don’t make the same mistake I did—any similarities to an oversized, bro’d out can of energy drink end outside the container**, and the juxtaposition of poor aesthetics on the outside with deliciousness within might be some super clever psychological trick to make the beer seem even better. I wouldn’t put it past the cats at Oskar Blues, they essentially invented the whole good-beer-in-a-can thing, so they must have a few other tricks up their sleeve.
So, if you ever find yourself with only one and a half nipples and need to ease the pain, I recommend a cold pint of Deviant Dale’s. But it’s also great if you just want to enjoy a really good, hoppy beer that’s impressively smooth and far more drinkable than most of its peers.
Let’s sling a little mud, girl …
** Without belaboring the point too much, I want to make sure we’re clear on this. Deviant Dale’s doesn’t taste anything like energy drink. Energy drinks look like radiator fluid and smell like nail polish remover. Deviant Dale’s smells like delicious beer and tastes like delicious beer. We good? Cool.