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Belt’s Beer Garden: Ari-zoned Out

Walter Station’s Hazing Arizona, a tasty NE IPA

Sitting in an old fire house on Phoenix, Arizona’s east side is Walter Station Brewery. They’ve been around for nearly five years now and are well know for their beers and their kick-ass pizzas.

Today I have one of their mainstay New England-style IPAs - Hazing Arizona.

Hazing Arizona takes its name from the 1987 Nicolas Cage movie, Raising Arizona, and has a bright yellow and red similar to that of the movie poster. This triple dry-hopped IPA was brewed with Amarillo, Centennial and Citra hops and is a bit lighter, clocking in at 6.4% ABV with about 52 IBU.

Sadly, with football starting and me finding a new, second job, in my haste I forgot to take a picture of the beer. However, the beer poured a cloudy, yet bright, golden straw color. A decent layer of head - roughly two fingers - bubbled up but didn’t waste time sticking around long. The off-white bubbles very quickly fizzled down into a thin layer around the edge of the glass with a solitary cloud covering the top of the brew.

On the nose I was met with a big punch of tropical fruits, hops, and an underlying flaked wheat/oat aroma. Orange, grapefruit, pineapple and guava were the biggest offenders while the hops offered up some earthier, slight dank, smells like resinous grass. The flaked grains imparted a cereal-esque quality to the brew.

My first swig began with a burst hops. However, it wasn’t those juicy fruit notes leading the way...no, it was the dank, slightly bitter hop flavors that hit first. There’s a light peppery spice that tingled towards the back of my throat before a wave of sticky resinous grass and hay appeared.

Luckily, after a second or two, the tropical fruit flavors came barreling forward. A massive blast of tangerine and guava and pineapple washed away the earthy hops. Some light papaya pokes its nose out every so often, with a pithy grapefruit joining in a bit more often.

There is one final push of citrus when that late arriving grapefruit decides it wants to be more involved. It brings a bitter spike that finishes off the sip before everything fades away.

It’s then a shocking clean finish from the beer...with just a light grapefruit rind aftertaste that lingers on for a few seconds.

The body was a thinner and, between its lightness and great flavors, it was a super crushable IPA. Overall, it was juicy, crushable and light. Put simply, it is a beer very well made and perfect for those evening after hot days when you just want a beer to cool off with.

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