Atwater Brewery Conniption Fit

Cleaning out the “pantry,” so to speak with some overdue posts….

Sometimes, you just strike out. That was the case with a bottle of Atwater Brewery Conniption Fit, a double IPA for which I reluctantly use “double” in its proper title. It’s got an 80 on Beer Advocate.

While drinking this beer I proposed a question to myself: “If this is Atwater’s double IPA, what the hell is their IPA?” This matters because this was one of the lamest double India Pale Ales I think I’ve had. It’s not for trying. Atwater most definitely uses a good amount of hops in this beer, but for the purposes of the style of a double IPA, it’s a swing and a miss.

You can smell earthy hops, but it it mostly came across as oak, citrus zest and dead grass. Not what I’m thinking of when I’m thinking double IPA.

Here’s where it gets funny. The mouthfeel is smooth, but not really dry. At 92 IBUs, the beer should be pretty bitter, but it’s not. I can taste the oak, but not the hops. It reminded me a bit of Great Divide’s barrel-aged double IPA without the bourbon flavor. The malt of this beer wants to come through so bad and there’s no reason for that. Conniption Fit even starts to taste bready as the beer warmed, gaining a medicine-like aftertaste – think cough syrup.

I should note again – it’s a well-balanced beer. But when it comes to a double IPA, I’m not looking for that. I want hops to shine through in all its characteristics. At least Atwater got the ABV right – Conniption Fit is 8 percent.

Hit the jump for my “Rate That Beer” sheet.

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