Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great by Tamamura Honten

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great is Tamamura Honten’s annual release in the “Masaji Beer Project” series of beers. It’s a 9% black IPA that is released at the beginning of December and 2015 is the fourth iteration of the beer. The inspiration behind it are the Minoh Stout and Minoh Imperial Stout beers combined with Tamamura Honten’s inhouse IPA. It can be found in bottles and on tap at some places as well.

Shiga Kogen WIBA Masaji the Great

Thick, brownish black syrupy body. It’s a double IPA alright.

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great Aroma and Taste

I missed out on Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great in 2014 due to it having an even quicker blink-and-miss it sale but luckily for me, my RSS feed came up from Ego-san’s blog (the brewmaster at Tamamura Honten – go read it!). I fired off an email order for a couple of bottles in the expectation of it selling out quickly, but then found it on World Beer Market and also in Deguchiya. So, I now have about six bottles of the stuff to review.

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great poured out a deep brown colour that appeared black in low-light. The head was quite meagre, with less than a finger’s worth on top. There was a strong aroma of roasted malts and a piney hop aroma. The best analogy would be a large waft of marijuana coming through. It may be a black IPA but it had a strong double IPA offering of hops but the lack of booziness on the nose was impressive – both chilled and warm.

The body was creamier than I’ve ever had from an IPA. A large citrus and bitterness hits you from the get go along with a syrupy texture to the body as well. The stout inspiration was also evident from the lightly roasted coffee hints on the beer as well though noway near enough to overpower the hoppiness on it. Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great finished off malty rather than hoppy – an interesting experience all the way through.

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great One Line Review

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great is a very nice beer worth finding while it’s on sale. Masaji-san, KAMPAI!

Where to Buy Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great

Shiga Kogen W-IBA Masaji the Great can be bought online at the following places:

About the Author


Been drinking beer since longer than I can remember. You can find me in a bar, on the slopes, or doing DIY. I enjoy porters, imperial porters, golden ales, and amber / viennas.

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