Hop Hazard Not Hap Hazard

Type of Beer: American Pale Ale

Beer: Hop Hazard
Brewery: River Horse Brewing Company
Rating: 7/10
Place of Purchase: Joe Canal’s, Marlton, NJ
Bottling Date: NA

Nose – floral, hoppy, bitter, strong hint of alcohol

Mouth – Medium body, malty heartiness, hints of caramel, honey and chocolate. Finishes hoppy, floral, bitter but balanced.

Overall a good brew. This is called Hop Hazard but this isn’t a hop head kind of beer. This is very well balanced. So if you are looking for a hoppy brew, look elsewhere.

River Horse is a craft brewer. Craft brewers make me nervous because often, the brewers are not brewing beer for the sake of the beer but rather for some “rock star” ideal in how creative or envelope pushing they can be. That often means the beer suffers and you end up with a rather hap hazard, unbalanced brew that is barely palatable. Hop Hazard is the opposite of that.

Every brewer has a signature brew that shows the brewmaster’s skills. I find that a skilled brew master can build a flavor profile that is balanced and complimentary. It’s easy to make a beer and just throw things in the pot and see what comes up. A skilled brew master is capable selecting ingredients and blends that work together instead of fighting each other. The guys over at River Horse took over the brewery in 2007. They’ve come a long way and Hop Hazard shows it. It is just a good beer. It will grow on you and it’s easy to drink. I don’t know if there is anything else you could ask for in a beer.

Like an old pickup truck, or your favorite pair of jeans, broken in sneakers or your most memorable dog. There’s just something familiar about this brew. It’s an American Pale Ale and it’s a great example of one. It’s independent of other pale ales that are often over hopped and off kilter. This isn’t. It’s familiar and steady and stands alone from other pale ales of all kinds. Kind of like it’s American namesake. This is Hop Hazard and one thing it’s not is hap hazard.

Here’s to Independence! Take some balls to stand out from the crowd.

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