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The Skulls are pleased.

When we designed the recipe for Golden Skull IPA 4 years ago we knew we wanted to make a REAL IPA. What’s the point of going through all the trouble of making an IPA and then stopping at 30 IBU’s? Why crush the malt if you’re only going for 3.8% ABV?

Golden Skull IPA was also the very first beer we brewed for our first festival – Clarens 2011, so we’ve had some time to get this recipe right.

Goldie is a bit of a brute. At 5.8% the  ABV and 80 IBU’s we believe we’ve made an IPA that can stand up to the biggest hop heads out there but still offer the flavour some of our less hoppy fans prefer. We’re talking about a beer that uses 3 different American hops; Magnum to drive the clean bitterness on your palate, Centennial to prop up some subtle citrus flavours and Simcoe to blow the roof off with huge amounts of pine, resin, papaya, mango and clementine. We wanted the nose on this beer to be one you’d remember,  so just for good measure we’ve dry hopped this bad boy with Simcoe as well. We know some people talk about ” drink the beer fresh ” but to us, we wanted our IPA flavours to meld and balance out so we’ve aged the beer for 6 weeks before it leaves the brewery. This ensures you get the finest bubble and the best experience of our favourite heavy hitter.

At the Skulls we’re also big on pairing good beer with good food. If you find yourself sitting with Goldie and you’re feeling peckish, may we suggest the following:

When pairing IPA with food you have three basic flavor hooks at your disposal; bitterness, hop flavor (spicy, grassy, herbal, earthy, and citrus), and caramel. Hop flavors have a great affinity for spices and light fruits. Bitterness has a cooling affect. Paired with spicy dishes, IPA will fan the flames at first, but douse them in the end. Bitterness also amplifies salty and umami flavors. The caramel flavors in the beer will latch onto the sweeter side of a dish, tying into things like caramelized onion or the crispy skins of roast poultry. And the hop acids and carbonation make IPAs great palate cleansers to take on even the fattiest deep-fried delights. – Source:

IPA’s love spicy food. We’re talking grilled meat, fried chicken, strong cheeses – Mexican, Thai, Indian or Portuguese meals LOVE IPA. Pizza with spicy sausuage or pepperoni, hot wings, dry fried steak with a pepper rub and even a ginger tart.

We’ll let you know on Twitter and Facebook when you can get your hands on a bottle or two. Feel free to let us know what you thought, we’d love to hear from you.