For anyone familiar with the Ontario craft beer scene, the numbered IPA series from Collective Arts Brewing in Hamilton has been a staple of fine IPAs since the very first one.

My personal favourites were IPA No 2, and IPA No 5. Both offered an immense amount of flavour and hops, and stood comfortably alongside the best IPAs from any brewer.

Unfortunately, that came to a crashing halt with IPA No 6, that divided fans in a way I haven’t seen too many times before. This was truly a beer you either loved or hated, there didn’t seem to be any middle ground (our team member Ryan fell into the former camp).

For me, No 6 was just too much of a miss – it didn’t feel like an IPA, more like a mush of fruit and hops. While I applaud any brewer for experimentation, this one just seemed to miss the mark.

Thanks goodness, then, for Collective Arts’ sterling return to form with the fantastic IPA No 7.

A big, fruity, Southern Hemisphere IPA, this uses Nelson, Sauvin, and Citra hops from New Zealand, which gives this mighty IPA a delicate mix of gooseberry and white grape flavours.

The grapefruit you expect from an IPA is definitely there, as is the malty bitterness (though it feels like the IBU isn’t too high, given the relative smoothness of the bitterness).

A good-sized head gives way to lacing all the way down the glass, and the 7.1% ABV means this IPA packs a solid punch from first sip to last.

After the disappointment that was IPA No 6, Collective Arts has made a statement of intent that they’re back on top of the IPA pile.

Given they have a rotational Double IPA that’s just been released – Surround Sound DIPA, which is a reboot of their awesome IPA No 5 – it’s a welcome return to form indeed.

 

  • ABV: 7.1%
  • IBU: N/A
  • Style:┬áSouthern Hemisphere IPA
  • Taste: Smooth, grapefruit, light wine mix
  • Rating: 4.8/5.0
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Danny Brown
Founder of The Craft Beer Diaries. Husband. Father. Part-time procrastinator. On a mission to help others discover the delight of, and passion behind, great craft beer. Favourite beers: IPAs, Belgian Trappist, porters.
Danny Brown
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