Beer Profile: Collective Distortion IPA by Stone

Profiled by Ken Carman for PGA

pgaprofilecollab-distort-bttle22Foggy, redish, hazy. Some remaining big bubble head but this bottle was leftopen for a while, so I’d never count that against the presentation. Only slight light shines through like a murky ruby.
Carmel malt nose with grapefruit like hops. Great balance. No coriander or elderberry in the nose.

Taste is a great balance of slight coriander, slight elderberry all balanced out with a firm hop, again grapefruity and taste a bit rind of…. But mostly the flesh.

The mouthfeel is firm with slight pepper from coriander and slightly slick caramel. Carbonation very slight to none, but this sample is old. Did I mention I opened it and forgot about it for a while? I was amazed there was any carbonation.

The malt, which is caramel and pale but quite complex melts into the grapefruit hops and the spices perfectly. I would think maybe a hint of Maris Otter, hint of Munich: with this it’s tough because it blends so well together, a masterpiece.

They call this a “collective brew,” but Stone’s site, nor RB and BA mentionhow the two musicians helped. Or was it named after them? “Collective” indicates more than that. Here’s what Stone says about it…

In bringing together artisans from disparate aural planes, one might expect an offbeat, feedback-warped cacophony, shrill to the point of unlistenable. Yet, by inviting Kyle Hollingsworth, keyboardist for eclectic, jam-prone sextet, The String Cheese Incident, and Keri Kelli, wailing rock guitarist of Alice Cooper fame, we were able to make truly beautiful music. Turns out, these musicians have a great deal in common, both with each other and with Stone. We all enjoy turning things up to 11, and that is represented in this collaborative offering, an imperial India pale ale ably backed by Nugget, Comet and Calypso hops, and amplified care of a healthy dry-hopping with Vic’s Secret, a new Australian hop, adding citrus and tropical fruit oomph. To give this modern masterpiece some soulful, classic character, we traced the roots of brewing to the days when Old World herbs were used to spice beers, adding in coriander and, a first for us, elderberries. To stand up to that sumptuous spice and blaring bitterness, we added golden naked oats, which are lightly roasted and add body and enhanced mouthfeel to the brew like a steady, unbreakable backbeat to an incendiary jam solo. Sit back, crank the volume and get lost in this operatic incarnation of genres combined in the name of invention.

88 at Beer Advocate,with no rating by the site owners, 95 overall at Rate Beer, 75 for style. Not quite sure how one can rate “style” that strictly when it’s obvious a Specialty based off an Imperial IPA.

Looks like it may have been introduced at The Maui Brewers Festival.Once again: a bit vague in the promos I read.



Welcome to the PGA beer rating system: one beer “Don’t bother.” Two: Eh, if someone gives it to you, drink. Three: very good, go ahead and seek it out, but be aware there is at least one problem. Four: seek it out. Five: pretty much “perfecto.”


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FredricmartianKen Carman was raised by wild yeast on the fermentation plains of Moosesylvania. There is no truth to him having grown up near NYC, but not so secretly longing to live in the Adirondacks. Or that he did. Or that he moved to Tennessee. Or that when he retires he’ll move back. Or that he started brewing in 79cause most of the selections sucked. Or that he’s a BJCP judge, a columnist. it’s all lies. Right now he’s still thinking it’s all true as he sucks down Miller in the Matrix, but dreams of more complicated quaffs.

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