I've had this batch on the pumps for several weeks now, and there are only two casks left in the cellar, so come and get your pint before the next guy does. It is based off a recipe that is based off a recipe. In the classic nature of handed-down news, I suspect what I have going on here is much different than from the originator of the homebrew recipe, Dave A (on the right). In fact, I know that it is different because I have had the original dispensed from the kegerator in his garage. It was called Zippy IPA at the time.
A bottle of original made its way to our sister pub the Woolpack Inn a couple of years ago, nestled in a sock inside a backpack inside the belly of a United Airlines jet. It took a year, but the bottle was discovered lurking in the cellar and summarily consumed, causing Dave B (on the left) to inquire about the origin of the bottle. This led to the acquisition of the recipe, and its subsequent modification into a number called Zippy Red IPA.
I decided to have a go at it one day, and called Dave B for the recipe. There was some confusion as to crystal malt color designations, as the British like using arcane units of measure, but I just used 120L crystal for whatever was specified as crystal. Upon tapping, we discovered this lovely dark red stuff that had nice balance and a subtle hop aroma. Would I call it an IPA, like Dave A and Dave B did? Nope. It wasn't pale, for one thing, and it wasn't destined for India. It was just a dark red hoppy ale, albeit yummy, so I've been using the official style designation "Dark Red Ale". I think the official style designations have gotten a bit silly and out of hand, so I can make up my own; it's my pub.
This whole IPA thing has gotten out of hand. I like the occasional hop bomb, but for a nice night out at the pub I, generally speaking, don't require a hammer that large. I'm even getting more touchy about people stomping up to the bar and demanding (not "please" or "may I have") an IPA, without even looking at the beer list. Of course I can't appear touchy, what with the diminishing quality of customer service that this entails, but I'll talk about you when you leave, and you know who you are. The other one I often get is "What's your hoppiest?". This could mean several things. Are you talking about the finish; or about the number of IBU's; or what about that massive amount of bittering that doesn't translate into aroma. I have a nice bitter on right now that's nice and hoppy, what with the 0.3 Kg of Fuggles dumped in at flameout. It's sure hoppy by many standards, but its 3.5% ABV and lack of citrus confuses the unwashed masses.
2 Daves certainly is "hoppy", double quotes intended, but three of the handy imperial nonics will serve you nicely for an evening session at the Local 180. See you there.