1. Pliny the Elder
-Russian River Brewing Co., Santa Rosa, CA
The stuff of legends, this double IPA can be a hard find, but off and on has been argued to be one of the greatest in the states. It’s named for the ancient Roman naturalist "Pliny the Elder" who first studied the hop plant. The Russian River brewers in Santa Rosa, CA keep supply tight to ensure freshness, but if you can get your hands on the Elder, a world of well-balanced malt, hop and citrus is sure to be a mouth-watering experience you won’t soon forget.
2. 60 Minute Dogfish
-Dogfish Head Brewery, Milton, DE
From the Dogfish Head Brewery in Milton, Delaware, this IPA is hopped with 60 different Northwest coast hop flowers over the course of a 60 minute boil (hence the name). Needless to say, this IPA is super hop forward with notes of bright lemon, pine and cedar.
3. Bell’s Hopslam Ale Michigan
-Bell's Brewery, Kalamazoo, MI
A lot of time and precision hopping goes into this aromatic double IPA. Six carefully selected north-western hop varietals are added as the brew process unfolds, finally culminating in a “dry hop” (adding hop flowers after the beer has cooled from the cooking process), bestowing a slight bitter and flowery finish to the beer. You’ll also find hints of grapefruit, honey, stone fruit and delicate malt.
4. Sculpin IPA
Ballast Point Brewing Company- San Diego, CA
Though it takes its name from a poisonous fish with spikes that can deal a nasty sting, the Sculpin craft IPA couldn’t be more different from the nasty bugger it's named after. The bite from the hops is gentle, giving way to a more subtle balance of lush fruit- mango, peach and lemon.
5. Brew Free or Die IPA
-21st Amendment Brewery,. San Francisco, CA
Brewed with "some serious west coast attitude" according to the maestros over at the 21st amendment Brewery, "this aromatic golden IPA starts with a sucker punch of six different hops to the nose, quickly balanced by a solid malt backbone."