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Belt’s Beer Garden: Glowing for Two

Crux Fermentation’s hazy IPA, Glow Stick, is so good that I need one for each hand!

When I traveled up to Bend, Oregon a few months ago one of the places that stopped me in my tracks was Crux Fermentation. They have an AMAZING tasting room complete with 24 taps, amazing views of the Cascade Mountains, and a huge outdoor space filled with games/food trucks/live music/friends that is not to be missed!

Crux offers up a variety of styles, from Lagers and Wild Ales to Stouts and IPAs. But looking at their list of brews right now, at the moment they are more IPA heavy. And that’s totally okay with me.

Today I have one of their newer year-round brews - Glow Stick. Glow Stick is a hazy IPA brewed with Citra, Sabro, and Strata hops. It’s packaged in 12 ounce cans with a six-pack costing around $13. Each can has a decent 5.9% ABV and 24 IBU.

This hazy IPA flowed a murky, yet bright, orange color out of the can with about a finger of eggshell white head topping it off. The foam was slightly dense but disappeared without much lacing.

Dank tropical fruits dominated the smell. Mango, pineapple, and guava led the way with some grapefruit and orange following close behind. The grist backing added in some nice flaked wheat notes but sat well underneath the fruit.

The sip begins with a nice fizzle of carbonation up front that the hoppy flavors slowly crawl out from. And, almost immediately, it seemed to expand creating a super thick and creamy mouthfeel.

Just like the smell, the taste of the beer is dominated by tropical flavors as well. Pineapple and guava lead the way with those orange and grapefruit notes quickly appearing after. The pineapple flavor isn’t the acidic, burning kind…instead, it’s more of the sweeter and juicier kind that you find in pineapple-flavored candies.

The entire sip is controlled by those tropical fruit flavors and, at no point, is there much of the grain bill making an appearance in the taste. Around the midway point, there is a small prickle of hops that tingles the back of the tongue but it is quickly washed away with a final burst of orange and pineapple.

However, there is a slightly chewy quality that lingers on at the end which, when mixed with the fruity flavors, is very reminiscent of eating a handful of gummy bears all at once. And that’s not a bad thing by any means.

Glow Stick was super crushable and delicious.It does finish a little dry but, outside of that tiny infraction, it’s a fantastic hazy IPA. I’m glad they made it a year-round beer because I might have to drive up to Oregon to grab myself more of this.

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