Five on Five: IPA

We asked five brewers to share some of their favorite IPAs with no limits as to sub-style or strength.

Jamie Bogner Sep 2, 2017 - 3 min read

Five on Five: IPA Primary Image

When it comes to IPAs, brewers can be an opinionated bunch. Whether hazy or crisp, session or imperial, their preferences tend to range wildly. Knowing this, we asked a few brewers to share some of their favorites, with no limits as to substyle or strength.

Dan Kleban

Cofounder of Maine Beer Company in Freeport, Maine

“Foundation Brewing Company in Portland, Maine, is doing really cool things with hoppy beers. I really like their Epiphany, which is their flagship IPA. It’s a really good beer! They have a little different take on beers than we do, but I appreciate what they’re doing, and they take their brewing very seriously. They do a lot of QA/QC on their beers, and it really shines through—they’re clean, hoppy beers.”

Wayne Wambles

Brewmaster for Cigar City Brewing Company in Tampa, Florida


“Wild Heaven (Decatur, Georgia) doesn’t get enough recognition, and they just started packaging in cans. Goodvice Double IPA is brand new, and it’s super, super tropical. The balance is good, but this double IPA has the most papaya character I’ve ever tasted in any beer. It even has that milky character that you get from papaya, then next is passion fruit,  and next is sweet orange peel. There’s very little hot-side hops addition unless it’s whirpool, then he dry hops the heck out of it. It’s really, really good. And it’s not turbid either.”

Matt Katase

Cofounder of Brew Gentlemen in Braddock, Pennsylvania

“I have to say Heady Topper from The Alchemist (Stow, Vermont). There’s not much I can say about the beer that hasn’t been said already. It’s just such an incredibly balanced, drinkable double IPA that’s consistently brewed superbly well.”

Mark Hastings

Head Brewer for Überbrew in Billings, Montana


“Headwall Double IPA from Tamarack Brewing (Missoula, Montana) was the Alpha King challenge winner—we were runner-up to them. We’ve said twice now that their beer could beat us, and they entered it last year. We tasted it before Alpha King at a festival in Missoula, and said, ‘You guys are going to beat us.’ And they beat us. Honorable mention has to go to Comrade Brewing (Denver, Colorado) and Cannonball Creek (Golden, Colorado).”

Jacob Leonard

Head Brewer for Breakside Brewing in Portland, Oregon

“I'm really digging Oregon-based Sunriver's Vicious Mosquito IPA right now.  The combination of Centennial, Columbus, and Simcoe is familiar and classic but really jumps out in this beer.  It seems like everyone is heading toward more fruity and juicy aromas, where VM stays strongly in the classic NW territory of pine and citrus. An excellent IPA.”

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Jamie Bogner is the Cofounder and Editorial Director of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®. Email him at [email protected].