I was recently placed on a beer embargo by my loving wife, who recognized that our fridge had become 50% craft beers and quite reasonably wanted me to enjoy some of what I had before I made any new acquisitions.

Well, I tried. Not for long, but I tried.

Knowing that we would be visiting my in-laws in Ajax, Ontario, I made the mistake of checking what nearby Town Brewery in Whitby, Ontario had on offer. Actually, I take it back. The “mistake” led me to Trophy Boaster, an aptly-named Double IPA (DIPA).

Since the first time I set foot into Town Brewery’s very aesthetically pleasing brewpub/bottle shop months ago, I’ve been drawn back in by their frequently intriguing offerings.

The atmosphere is great, and I have not had a bad experience. The staff are friendly, the vibe is relaxing, and the beer… well my review will speak for itself.

At a boozy 8.7% ABV, mid-range for a DIPA, I did not expect this to be so remarkably drinkable.

This is particularly true in the era of IPAs enhanced in flavour and mouthfeel by lupulin powder. I’ve had a few of such decadent and velvety IPAs recently, but I can say that Trophy Boaster is not lacking at all.

With four different varieties of hops (Mosaic, Idaho 7, Mandarina Bavaria, and Columbus), this brew could very well have ended up a bit of a confusing mess. Instead, the result is a super-powered hoppy DIPA that is remarkably smooth and balanced.

The blend is on the juicier side, with a clear citrus undertone, and the hoppiness is not so overbearing as to override the malt.

Having recently been to Newfoundland, home of more lagers than I could count, I’ve also been thinking about carbonation. As an added element, I find that far too many otherwise fine brews have been ruined by over- or under-carbonation.

One of the reasons that I don’t typically enjoy lagers is that the exceeding amounts of carbonation mask the flavour profile of the beer.

This is not a problem of IPAs, which is a reason that I enjoy them. I want to be able to detect the subtle flavour notes and enjoy the complexities, or even the flavourful simplicity, of my beer. Of course, a flat beer can taste like funky juice, which is not appealing, either.

In the case of Trophy Boaster, the carbonation level is exemplary. It pours with a creamy, but dense, head. The mouthfeel, while not velvety smooth, still bursts with flavour, without falling flat.

This is one of the smoothest and most flavourful DIPAs that I have ever had the opportunity to enjoy.

I am thrilled that in its first year of operation, Town has seemed to do everything right. The branding is clean. The people are good. The options are there, without being overwhelming.

Beyond all else, I have consistently experienced quality product that will keep me coming back, even in the presence of an embargo.


  • ABV: 8.7%
  • IBU: N/A (likely 60-120)
  • Style: Double IPA
  • Taste: Citrusy, hoppy, and smooth
  • Rating: 4.8/5.0
  • Untappd Reviews

As a continuing feature of my reviews, each review will be followed by a one to two-line review from my wife, Stephanie. As a non-beer drinker, her reviews will be from the perspective of a “layperson” beer drinker.

Stephanie’s review:

“Double IPAs always piss me off because they smell amazing… like a juicy beer… but they taste like ass. This isn’t the worst Double IPA I’ve had… I could actually have more than one sip.”


Ryan Heighton

Ryan Heighton

The Bar of Ontario isn’t the only bar to which he’s been called. Misses drinking at the SkyDome. Enjoying Waterloo Region one (sometimes two) craft beer at a time. Favourite beers: anything hoppy enough to jump off the table.
Ryan Heighton
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