Too Many IPAs
India Pale Ales account for more than 25% of the Oregon beer market. All beer, not just craft. But it seems that everything is an IPA these days. Black IPA, brown IPA, rye IPA, red IPA, white IPA, and now farmhouse IPA. I don’t know about you, but it seems that the term IPA is losing its meaning. Of these new styles, half of them don’t even pretend to be pale. And what does India have to do with it?
I understand what makes Flying Dog’s Wildeman a farmhouse beer – saison spice, full, tingly, creamy body. I get what makes it an IPA – citrus, grapefruit and lemons, bitterness, etc. Is it a combination of styles or a new style? I understand that the term IPA has cache. It’s a marketing tool. It tells the customer what to expect. But as a marketing tool the term IPA is losing its usefulness. If every craft beer is some sort of IPA why bother putting it on the label?
Over on The New School, Brian Yaeger makes the case for a name change.