Glassware: IPAs are a wonderful display of how aromatic beers can be and glassware that captures this alluring aroma is best. If possible pour into a Spiegelau IPA glass, if this isn’t an option a snifter or Willy Beecher pint glass will work. This is a great canned beer and will of course be great when enjoyed straight from the can.
Description: Brew Free or Die pours light hazy golden amber hue with bright white head that leaves behind a thick layer of lacing on the glass. The aroma is full of hoppy goodness with notes of grapefruit, pine, and floral hops up front followed by backing hints of semi-sweet malts. The taste follows the nose with hops dominant throughout bringing notes of citrus fruits and pine followed by a semi-sweet malt bill that soothes the palate. There is a solid balance within this beer that keeps the hops from overwhelming. That balance gives way to a textbook dry finish that will leave you wanting more. The medium body and moderate carbonation impart a crisp refreshing feeling from the beer. This is a definite go to IPA that has something for every occasion and all hopheads must try.
Food pairing: IPA’s are great with spicy foods but there is far more to a beer like Brew Free or Die. The seemingly simple, straightforward IPA goes great with many popular American foods. For the next Friday pizza night be sure to have this beer handy. The malts will melt into the crust while the hops gravitate toward spicy pepperoni, sausage or meatballs and the effervescent carbonation will scrub the palate clean each time. Backyard barbecues are a great match with this beer. Ribs, brisket, cheeseburgers; don’t be afraid to pile the toppings high. This workhorse of a beer handles it all. This is a great beer to pair with dessert, especially pie. The semi-sweet malts will melt into the sugar backbone of any pie, but especially wonderful with strawberry rhubarb, key lime and peach cobbler pie.
The Final Word: Brew Free or Die IPA has been a staple in the craft beer scene for a number of years and has gained quite a loyal following. The IPA style is one that many craft brewers and drinkers flock to with many favorites becoming the latest flavors of the week. Why not find a great reliable IPA that is freely available to enjoy. Brew Free or Die is that IPA and is a fantastic go to IPA available throughout the area and also comes in a can, yes a can! The wonderful hop punch and strong malt backbone present a beer that is sturdy, delicious and balanced. No matter how many IPAs come and go in the craft beer market, Brew Free or Die will remain a standout that should be enjoyed by all who love the style!
Derek Warren is a beer fanatic, avid homebrewer and beer historian. Derek can be heard weekly on the Beer Geeks Radio Hour at noon on Sundays on WILK 103.1 FM with past episodes available on iTunes.
Brewer- 21st Amendment Brewery
Beer- Brew Free or Die IPA
Style- American IPA