Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki is a 5% American IPA from Sakai Kashi Brewery, based in Sakai, in Ibaraki, Japan. It’s part of their bottled and draught line up, though its availability is unknown at the time of writing. As the name suggests, Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki is brewed using only a single malt, in this case 2-row pilsner, and a single hop, which is Ibuki, a domestically developed hop.
Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki : At A Glance
- Alcohol : 5%
- Style : American IPA
- Hops : Japanese Ibuki
- IBU : Unknown
- Availability : Unknown
- On Sale : From November 2021
- Size : 330 ml
- Price : From 600 yen
Aroma & Taste
- Notable Aromas : Musty cardboard and oxidised aroma. No noticeable citrus aromas.
- Notable Tastes : Musty cardboard flavour with no discernible bitterness. Faint malt sweetness.
Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki : Aroma & Taste
I have to be honest and say I wasn’t looking forward to Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki – I am not a big fan of SMaSH beers as if there are any faults, they become exacerbated due to the lack of being able to hide them behind flavours. And with this being a beer that uses Ibuki hops – notoriously difficult to use well. On the flip side, SMaSH beers also bring out the good points of a particular hop that you want to show off.
Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki poured out a golden orange colour with a thin white head on top that faded to a few bubbles around the side of the glass. The aroma though was not pleasant at all. There was a strong musty cardboard aroma – imagine some boxes that had been stored outside and become damp and you’d be along the right lines – with a strong oxidised aroma to it. Perhaps the bottle had been stored incorrectly but this was a beer that did not smell enticing at all.
The body lacked any discernible bitterness – guessing that not enough Ibuki hop was used at the beginning of the boil to add enough bitterness. But that wasn’t even the worst thing about it. If the nose had not been enough of a give away, the butter flavour that permeated throughout drinking just made Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki an unpleasant beer to drink. Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki ended up being an esteemed member of the drain pour club as the off-flavours just became stronger as it warmed up – making it undrinkable to say the least.
SMaSH : Why Do It?
SMaSH (Single Malt and Single Hop) are used to show off the qualities of a single hop or a single malt as required.
Hops can be used in different quantities to produce different aromas and flavours.
Likewise, a single malt can be used if it has interesting characteristics, such as Vienna malt which has a honey like flavour to it.
Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki : The Bottom Line
Just avoid this if you can – there was nothing positive to say about this beer.
Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki : Where to Buy It
Sakai Kashi SMaSH Ibuki can be bought online at the following places: