Beer Review: Icicle (New Trail Brewing Co)

Beer Review: Icicle (New Trail Brewing Co)

Icicle by New Trail Brewing Co., a hazy New England IPA

Well this post was a bit of a long time in coming I suppose. This was meant to be worked on and written and finished many times throughout this week. Sunday night was the usual hang-out at Irgo’s Tavern with co-workers, so that night was definitely a no-go for writing this up. (Especially since then afterwards went back to a co-workers house and watched Elimination Chamber and left his house at 3AM.)

Monday night was a bit busy and hectic as well. A family member was taken to the hospital where she has been since. (Not coronavirus or COVID-19, so don’t worry, I’m not infected. Obviously, I mean no offense to anyone, I’m just using humor to keep things together and keep the stress at bay, much like I use this blog itself.) Tuesday night after work, was the annual co-worker fantasy draft. Typically what ends up happening at these drafts is – my co-workers get my pretty good and drunk and they let me draft for a person who can’t make it. Inevitably that team lands Top 3. Doesn’t matter the sport, baseball or basketball (the ones we do). I don’t even watch basketball, NBA, college, whatever, so I know next to nothing about it, yet the one year I drafted the team that ended up winning. (The guy only made 5 roster moves all season.) I even drafted a guy with the last name DUDLEY solely because I liked the Dudley Boyz; ECW / WWE / TNA / ROH / etc. tag team.

Yesterday (Wednesday) was spent at the hospital. With the daughters. And doing a host of other things; which also consisted of my oldest daughter’s first softball practice of the season. I had walked a combined total of 9 some miles. And this was on a day where I only got home at 4:15 from the festivities the night before. (The fantasy draft, then led to going to a bar doing Irish Car Bombs, then led to hanging out for a bit before getting home.) So needless to say, the week quickly went by and we find ourselves here at Thursday morning.

Not sure how we got here, but all I know is, we made it to this point, and its about time I do this review, and owe it to you guys. You’ve been patiently waiting, so its time I get around and get writing! (I’d say “get off my fat butt”, but I sit to write, so I literally have to sit ON my fat butt to write it.)

So where do we find ourselves at? Ahh yes, reviewing some New Trail beer. Friday night while waiting out my youngest’s ballet class, I was at Funck’s Restaurant in Palmyra. They have a pretty heft selection (56 taps). Found two good New Trail beers on tap, and enjoyed them both immensely. Now, sometimes in the past I’d do this as a double-beer review, and I’m even thinking of doing it now…. but I think I’m going to hold off and make this two separate beer reviews. (In the past I’ve done “Two Beer Review” and “Multiple Beer Review” posts; especially when its the same brewery, at the same location, drank at the same time.) I think going forward with the blog I’m going to restrain from doing that (except perhaps in particular circumstances). I’ll do multiple beer review posts for beer flights I have at breweries, and outside of that always keep it to single beer reviews.

Thus this will be a single beer review and I’ll first cover Icicle by New Trail Brewing; the next post will most likely be the Sticky Barrel Aged Porter I also had by New Trail Brewing there at Funck’s. (Unless I decide to split it up with another beer that I’ve had.)

Let’s get to this!

Icicle by New Trail Brewing Co.

Beer: Icicle
Brewery: New Trail Brewing Co.
Style: IPA – New England
ABV: 7%
IBU: None Listed
Untappd Description: Icicle is a Hazy IPA brewed with a blend of oats, wheat, & spelt. Drippingly hopped with Simcoe, Amarillo, & Centennial. Expect luscious citrus flavor mixed with that earthy green. Enjoy the long thaw with us.

One thing that can be said for New Trail; they pretty much deliver spot on with their descriptions. If they say a beer tastes like 1930s bubble-gum wrapped in bacon with a hint of ranch dressing; then you better believe thats what it’ll taste like.

Appearance for this is typical straight up hazy New England IPA. (Which is pretty much typical for all New Trail beers; IPA at least; which is their bread and butter anyway.) Turbid, dank, murky, dark orange to orange juice in hue. My friend (D. Scott) ordered the same as his second beer, and his looked a bit more brighter and fluorescent than mine, but same similar appearance, and both very dank and hazy. Certainly no clarity with these beers. Slight bit of sediment, but nothing to extreme.

Aroma is hop… hop… hop bomb through and through. Citrus and strong tropical notes but all hop and all day and all throughout hop. Strong citrus, strong tropical fruit, some stone fruit, late notes of grass.

This is a New Trail IPA, through and through; meaning be prepared for a juicy, strong hoppy, New England hazy style IPA. There is no denying they know their style and ability to make these are great, but you know all this going in, and they confirm it with each new IPA they release. Your not going to get a bad IPA from them… but, overall you also probably are not getting a massive variety of IPA from them. Insofar as I mean that their substituting a few hops for a few different hops and you get a more X (say citrus) flavor and then in the next one you get more Y (say stone fruit) or something similar. They are all GREAT and AMAZING beers. I’ve yet to have had a West Coast IPA from them (not sure if they’ve even made one and released one). And like I’ve said, I’ve yet to have had a BAD beer from them. I do think with NE-IPAs that they all tend to flow together. Substitute Hop 1X for Hop Y, meanwhile keeping hops Hops 2X and 3X the same, and then in beer 2, you substitute Hop 2X for Hop Y2, etc. For just subtle, slight, nuanced variations. But they sell, and they sell good, and you can keep re-naming them all too, and super inflate your ultimate Untappd, Beer Advocate, and other beer rating platform totals. Its a great marketing idea. This isn’t a hounding on them or hating on them, just something I’ve noticed with them, and a few other breweries have done the same. Its not a horrible practice, in fact its downright smart. But enough of that, lets talk the flavor of THIS particular beer.

Like the description says, you are getting oats, wheat, and spelt; so you are getting a hazy, dank, juicy IPA. Haze. Craze. For hops they used simcoe, amarillo, and centennial, giving this a massive amount of tropic flavor. Immediately on sipping you get the tropical juice, up front, coming straight at you, then it leads itself into a bit of stone fruit, a bit dryer, a bit off the sweet side, nothing tangy, nothng off, nothing bitter, but then it ends in the earth, giving you a bit of a grassy, green, earthy finish. Like working through a weird and exotic forest; starting with tropical fruits then seguing into stone fruits before you finish on the forest floor getting the grass and earthyness. This is certainly a fun, full, luscious beer. Its nothing too dry, sweet, or cloying, its just right all over. A fun, tasty beer all around.

My Untappd Rating: ****
Global Untappd Rating: 4.07 (as of 3.12.20)

As I said at the start of this, sorry for the delay in getting this blog post out, as I’m sure you can all understand why. Depending on my night, I might do a second (I know I say this a lot and then it doesn’t happen), or I might fire one off before work tomorrow morning. Saturday, all fingers and toes and other appendages crossed, I will be attending the Kegs & Eggs at Rotunda Brewery / The Batdorf. J. Doncevic will also be there. You can find the event listing here: Kegs & Eggs 2020. Money goes towards Elliot’s CP Journey. So come on out and support a good cause.

In other blog news, I edited the Haze Charmer article to include the links and articles like I said I would at the end of it. Forgot to do that on initial release of the post.

Thanks for reading everyone!

Cheers, prost, and slainte!

-B. Kline

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