Working my way through variety packs from Boulevard and Sierra Nevada have led me to this duel, pairing Sierra Nevada’s Hop Solo against Boulevard’s DDH Citra. These variety packs are a nice way to try a number of beers from brewers I’m familiar with, but mostly beers I haven’t tried before. It’s a great way to line up a number of duels, and could lead you to picking a favorite between the brewers. I’m not quite ready to make that leap, maybe after a few more duels.
According to their website, the Sierra Nevada Hop Solo is brewed start to finish with only Crystal Hops, “allowing their spicy, woodsy, one-of-a-kind character to shine through.” I’d be lying if I told you I knew anything about Crystal Hops, but hopefully they lead to flavor packed brew. The DDH Citra has been dueled before by me (here), falling in it’s last match. Let’s see if things play out differently for the DDH Citra in this one.
|Better label||Sierra Nevada Hop Solo|
|Better aroma||Boulevard DDH Citra|
|Better taste||Boulevard DDH Citra|
|Better finish||Sierra Nevada Hop Solo|
|Winner||Boulevard DDH Citra|
Tell us about it
This ended up being a very close duel. I have a hard time reviewing the DDH Citra’s label, since it seems clear they are just placing a “tasting room” label on the beer and running it out the door without much thought to the artwork. It’s still a solid label for what it is, but there isn’t enough going on there to beat the Hop Solo in the category.
From there, the two beers bounce back and forth in aroma taste and finish. The bright, tropical flavor and aroma from the DDH Citra is really appealing to me and it led to wins in those categories. The Hop Solo’s crystal hops led to a great finish and took the category there. In the end, I gave the nod to the DDH Citra because the flavors combinations are just more appealing to me, but each beer was a worthy participant.
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