It is impossible to taste and cover all the beers Port Brewing and Lost Abbey offer in their shared location in one go. Lost Abbey tends to focus on Abbey style Belgian beers while Port is more in the style of West Coast IPAs. I might eventually come back to review the offerings of Lost Abbey but this post covers exclusively Port Brewing beers. It is interesting that most of the signage in the brewery is for Lost Abbey. It is as if Port is just along for the ride. I didn’t have a ton of time when I stopped by so I asked them to give me tasters of the hoppiest beers on tap, which were all from Port Brewing.
This resulted in an interesting selection that was mostly on the heavy side. The beers I tasted were Anniversary, Wipeout IPA, Mongo IIPA, Shark Attack, and Grommett Session IPA. Though served in that order I tasted them in order from light to strong. Good thing too, because I wouldn’t have tasted the Grommett after Shark Attack.
The Grommett was a great session IPA, light but bursting with hop flavors. I could see myself buying this in a six-pack if it becomes available. It had a crisp floral/pine flavor and overall quite satisfying. The Wipeout IPA was a proper West Coast style IPA with tropical fruit and dank hopy flavors. It was on the sticky side and solidly bitter as well. I enjoyed it but I found the Mongo to be more to my tastes.
The Mongo IIPA is a favorite among my friends in San Diego and it was nice to taste this at the source. Though it is 8.5% the hop flavors are nicely pronounced. The Mongo is a delicious blend of Amarillo, Columbus, and Cascade hops. It is certainly the Columbus and Cascade that I enjoy more than anything. The beer has a solid citrus and pine with an intense bitterness that is just what I love to taste.
The Shark Attack was certainly a powerful beer, knocking me out with intense malt flavors and a little bit of hop in the background barely noticeable. I am not a fan of the thick syrupy malt flavors and this one was the best example of what I don’t enjoy. I’d be surprised if in total I finished 1/3 of the taster. Finally I ended with the Anniversary, an extra strong pale ale that is closer to a Tripple IPA. This one was also thick and syrupy with strong tropical fruit and citrus. I finished it but just barely. The syrupy flavors were almost too much for me.
In the end, nothing came close to the delicious flavors of the Mongo. If you decide to drop by Port and are looking for some hops, I would suggest you go for either the Wipeout or the Mongo.