SweetWater Brewing Co. | Dank Tank Fresh Sticky Nugs, Hazy Imperial IPA
SweetWater Brewing Company turns the dank dial to the max with their latest Dank Tank Fresh Sticky Nugs. Let’s all take a moment and remember the first time we tried an intensely hoppy IPA. The bracing bitterness and intense aromas that felt so dominating back then are not as common today. Sure, part of that is due to acclimating to the hops but also the trend away from the classic hop varietals to more boutique and less bitter hop strains. But Fresh Sticky Nugs delivers the nostalgia in spades!
Fresh Sticky Nugs pours an almost auburn hued hazy golden yellow with a thick white head. The oat flakes and Wheat in the malt bill create a distinct haziness that is still far from the milky, orange juice like appearances common of the trendy “New England style” beers dominating your feed. Luckily this beer wasn’t brewed to get attention from your social media followers, but instead to be drank. The appearance hints at the mouthfeel of Fresh Sticky Nugs which sits perfectly in the middle of the scale – neither too watery nor too thick.
Fresh Sticky Nugs gives one of the dankest aroma’s I have ever smelled. The Simcoe, Citra and Amarillo hops certainly do not hide their presence. Head brewer Nick Nock described the aroma as being “like cracking open a hop field.” I most certainly would have to agree. The aroma of Fresh Sticky Nugs wisps out of the glass like a pie cooling on a window. Resin, pine and the distinct almost skunky aroma of Simcoe fill the air around the glass. This beer may as well be the very essence of the hops that flavor it. A real throwback to the IPAs we all fell in love with. The aroma immediately brings me back to the first few IPAs I ever drank.
Fresh Sticky Nugs immediately hits you with an intense hop bitterness right at the beginning of the taste. The bitterness gives way to a grapefruit peel, hints of resin and an intense pine note. Here is where the nostalgia floods me and memories of the first few IPAs I ever drank come back. The beer does have a bit of a grassy note likely from the weight of all the hops being used in the recipe. In the past overly hopped
The beer does have a bit of a grassy note likely from the weight of all the hops being used in the recipe. In the past overly hopped IPAs can quickly get medicinal, almost aspirin-like in the flavor, but Fresh Sticky Nugs navigates in such a way through the palate that it avoids this common pitfall. Just as the medicinal flavor begins to creep in on the taste, the malt supporting the hops swoops in bringing out some of the fruitier qualities of the hops.
I couldn’t resist the chance to pair Fresh Sticky Nugs with homemade butternut squash mac and cheese. The hop bitterness cuts right through the cheesy sauce and the semi-sweet, earthy butternut squash supports the finish of this beer clearing the bitterness and encouraging another sip. Fresh Sticky Nugs would also pair fantastically with pizza or ravioli. If you are feeling fancy, you could pair this beer equally well with a great Fondue.
Whatever you choose to pair with it, SweetWater Brewing Company’s latest Dank Tank – Fresh Sticky Nugs – will certainly turn back the clock to the IPAs you grew to love. Intense bitterness and heady aromas highlight SweetWater’s latest Dank Tank release. Pick it up in 16oz cans before this limited release disappears.