Deschutes Brewery | Foray Belgian Style IPA
In a time when one out of every five craft beers sold in America is an IPA, it can be difficult to muster enthusiasm for yet another bottle containing something hoppy and golden. No? You’re still interested? Busted…me too. As much as I love other styles, when facing a beer menu, my eyes always wander towards the IPAs first. Perhaps it’s the promise of drinking an old favorite or maybe it’s the chance of seeing something new and intriguing. While still thriving, single and double IPAs find themselves sharing shelf space with triple IPAs, white IPAs, black IPAs, sour IPAs, and even Belgian-style IPAs.
That last entry brings us to the subject of today’s showcase, Deschutes Brewery’s Foray. This seasonal release–available May-Sep–is brewed with pilsner and carapils malt, hopped with Nugget, Amarillo, Mosiac, CTZ, and Galaxy hops, and fermented with a Belgian Yeast strain promised to bring fruity notes to the party. Belgian-style IPAs are usually my least favorite member of the family, but given Deschutes’s many successes across the spectrum of IPAs including Chainbreaker, Hop Henge, and Fresh Squeezed , I was excited to receive a sample bottle. Would I be disappointed?
Foray poured a pale golden yellow with a thick, pillowy head that lasted most of the glass. My first impression of the aroma was lemon, but closer examination exposed white grapes, stone fruit, and perhaps pineapple. Lemon and white grapes carried through in the flavor leading to light, crackery, faintly sweet malt.
Unlike so many Belgian-style IPAs I’ve tried, where the hops and yeast battled in a manner which displeased my tastebuds, the yeast used in Foray seemed to gently accent the hops and malt with fruity esters reminiscent of ripe apples and pears. Light and effervescent with a slightly creamy mouthfeel, the beer finished very clean and dry. If forced to muster one complaint, I wish that something this quaffable was available in six-packs. Overall, Foray is another great entry in Deschutes’s roster of IPAs and well worth trying, especially if you’re slow to love Belgian-style IPAs.