Santa’s Pint Glass – Day 3

Staying in the land of holiday hops for another day so that we can celebrate another year of what is probably the second most iconic seasonal ale. Celebration Fresh Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada.

Described thusly, “Once we pick fresh hops, the clock starts ticking. Each year, we visit the Pacific Northwest to hand-select the best Cascade and Centennial hops, race the harvest home, and brew immediately to capture citrus, pine, and floral notes at their absolute peak — aromas and flavors for the perfect winter beer. It’s a magical time at the brewery — has been for 40 years now! — when our brewers huddle around the fermentation tanks, toasting the start of a special season. Wrapped in red, consider Celebration IPA your first present of the holidays.”

Sierra Nevada – Hop v Hop

Let’s have a hop battle. Which do I like best from Sierra Nevada?

Celebration in one corner and Northern Hemisphere in the other.

Both the Wet Hop Northern Hemispher and the Fresh Hop holiday beers pour a nearly identical deep orange color.

Both are very malt forward. More red ales in my estimation. Both again are very dank and woodsy in Hop bitterness. I almost get like a cedar note from the NH and a toasted malt note from Celebration but I blind tasted this duo and thought at first that my wife had tricked me and poured the same beer in each taster glass. This were the only tiny differences in the beers.

Celebration wins in the end by a small amount due to that malt touch that adds a little sweetness to the strong woodsy bitterness.