Nihonkai IBA is a 7% American brown ale / India pale ale from Nihonkai Beer Club, based Hosu, Ishikawa. It’s part of their draft only range of beers and can be found across Japan, though it has been seen only rarely in bottles. The hop used in the beer for aroma is Cascade but not much else is known about Nihonkai IBA, besides it standing for India Brown Ale.
Nihonkai IBA Aroma and Taste
The main problem with drinking at Ebina Beer is that the beer strength is not listed on the menus, though I guess in this day and age, if something is labelled as an IPA, IPL, IBA, or I-Whatever-A, then you can expect some serious alcohol heat going on.
Nihonkai IBA came up a dark muddy brown colour with a slightly off whitish head that had flecks of brown in. There was a roasted bitter malt nose to it that nestled between flourishes of citrus hoppiness tinged with a subtle resinous nose too. Whatever hops had gone into Nihonkai IBA, and I really don’t know as nothing about this beer is listed anywhere, then they were well-balanced out.
I wish I had known that Nihonkai IBA was 7% when I first drank it – I had four beers that night and thought it was strange why I felt so drunk – but I blame Nihonkai IBA. In a good way. The roasted bitter malt was smooth and thirst quenching in the body, while the hops brought a bitter edge to Nihonkai IBA, and when paired up with some lemon and grapefruit flavours, all came together well. So well in fact that I really couldn’t put the beer down to stop drinking. It finished leaving some toned down sweetness and lemon but they didn’t last long as the next gulp came far too quick.
Nihonkai IBA The Bottom Line
I wish I could have got Nihonkai IBA to take away and that should be an indicator of how good it is. Well worth trying if you see it on the menu at your local craft beer bar.