Go for Gold: The best IPAs to try in 2019

Wednesday, June 19, 2019
The popularity of the India Pale Ale or IPA continues with loads of breweries releasing new versions like “juicy or hazy” IPAs which can be reminiscent of tropical fruit juice. Yum!

IPAs were awarded over 30 gold medals in the recent Australian International Beer Awards so if you’ve got a large IPA-sized hole in your life, this list of gold medal-winning beers will fill that gap.

1. At the very top of the list is the Hawkers West Coast IPA brewed in Victoria by Hawkers Brewery.
Not for the faint hearted, this big hoppy bitter West Coast style IPA with huge floral, fruity, and piny aromas is the best of the best (Best IPA, 2019 AIBA).

2. Sleeping Giant IPA, draught, Gage Roads Brewing Co, WA, Australia
With caramel malt and overripe stone fruit character, this British-style IPA is rich with balanced with a big bitter finish.

3. Goose Irish IPA, draught, Goose Island, Korea
A juicy British-style IPA with big, bracing, piney hop flavors which meet a tropical bouquet of hops. There’s a balanced bitterness that blends seamlessly into the light to medium body.

4. Balter IPA, packaged, Balter Brewing, QLD, Australia
This American-style IPA has a clean hoppy base offering a relentless, yet refined bitterness complemented by pine and citrus aromatics.

5. Super Hop West Coast IPA, draught, Blackman's Brewing, VIC, Australia
An American style IPA with a hop combo that delivers predominantly pineapple, citrus and piney characters and a little light malt sweetness to balance the not insignificant bitterness [source: The Crafty Pint].

6. Chainbreaker, draught, Blasta Brewing, WA, Australia
A double dry-hopped American-style IPA brewed with their fresh hops. It’s a two wheeled wild ride to tropical fruit and piny hop heaven.

7. West Coast IPA, draught, Cheeky Monkey Brewery and Cidery, WA, Australia
The malt and hop combo of this American-style IPA tastes of orange zest, passionfruit and mango. Firm bitterness.

8. Atomic IPA, draught, Gage Roads Brewing Co, WA, Australia
A classic US-style pale ale brewed with 4 iconic hop varietals. It’s full-flavoured with piny-citrus hop character and loads of caramel malts, balanced by a refreshing bitterness.

9. IPA, packaged, Hope Brewery, NSW, Australia
Assertive American style IPA. Big flavours of citrus, pine and tropical fruit with a solid malt backbone that provides good structure. Strong and satisfying bitterness on the finish.

10. Jetty Road Brewery IPA, draught, Jetty Road Brewery, VIC, Australia
Golden honey in colour, punchy U.S hops give notes of tropical fruits, melon and guava.

11. Psychotic Girl IPA, draught, 
This take on the classic American West Coast IPA has just enough malt to carry the heavy hopping regime which allows the flavours of mango, pine and citrus to shine.

12. Moo Brew IPA, draught, Moo Brew Pty Ltd, TAS, Australia
This beer smells like pineapple juice and tastes like beer. A big juicy one at that, with some serious hop oil action. German Specialty Pale Malts maintain brightness and balance.

13. Mosaic, packaged and draught, Pirate Life Brewing, SA, Australia
A kaleidoscopic journey through tropical flavours, backed by a clean, light malt bill it's the beer equivalent of a fruit punch juice box.

14. IPA, draught, Pirate Life Brewing, SA, Australia
A hoppy American style IPA that’s bright, fruity and full of flavour.

15. Hop Stomper IPA, draught, Stomping Ground Brewing, VIC, Australia
With notes of grass, pine and citrus, this West Coast IPA has a firm bitterness and citrus aroma.

16. India Pale Ale, draught, The Beer Farm, WA, Australia
An American IPA with a rounded malt character and a resinous hop profile. Mosaic and Citra hops bring out a pineapple and stonefruit aroma, complemented by the citrus spice of NZ Motueka.

17. The Fix, draught, Fixation Brewing Co, VIC, Australia
A fruity, punchy and hop driven double IPA, which is dry and light on the palate, with a light malt body.

18. Uppercut - DDH IIPA, draught and packaged, Green Beacon Brewing Co, QLD, Australia
A double dry hopped double IPA with punchy citrus hop character, tropical fruit, pine and a balanced malt sweetness.

19. Gardenia IIPA, Packaged Murray's Craft Brewing Co, NSW, Australia
This double IPA has a big citrus and pine aroma from classic US hop varieties that hits you up front. The middle is all malt and warming alcohol, giving way to a firm delivery of bitterness to polish off the experience. 

20. Hump Day IPA, draught, All Hands Brewing House, NSW, Australia
This IPA hits you with a tri-nation tropical hop fruit melange and a piney kick that leans into a robust bitterness. Source: The Crafty Pint.

21. Grapefruit Sculpin, packaged, Ballast Point Brewing, United States
India Pale Ale with grapefruit. Refreshing citrus and tart character.

22. Super Trooper Imperial NEIPA, draught, Dainton Family Brewery, VIC, Australia
Imperial New England IPA.

23. Mind Haze, packaged, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., United States
Juicy yet balanced, hazy yet lasting, and loaded with an array of tropical hop flavors.

24. Easey St, draught, Fixation Brewing Co, VIC, Australia
This IPA is high on the hop punch to keep you refreshed at any time of day. Showcasing Citra and Mosaic hops in all their glory, this sessionable IPA packs a flavour hit well above it’s weight.

25. The 86, draught,  Fixation Brewing Co, VIC, Australia
This beer shows soft and juicy aromas of pine, papaya and citrus fruits. It pours hazy in appearance but it drinks smooth on the palate.

26. Obsession Session IPA, draught, Fixation Brewing Co, VIC, Australia
The perfect blend of flavour and drinkability. The hop aroma is instant and the taste is clean and fruity. This is a refreshing beer loaded with the best Simcoe and Mosaic hops.

27. Windjammer - IPA, draught, Green Beacon Brewing Co, QLD, Australia
Juicy citrus and pine with firm hop bitterness.

28. Sonic Prayer IPA, draught, O. Brewing, NSW, Australia
Includes additions of new world hops resulting in aromatic reverberations of citrus, peach, passionfruit and pine followed by an unstinting malt body and bitterness.

29. Crikey IPA, packaged, Reuben's Brews LLC, WA, United States
Led by notes of citrus, tangerine, tropical fruit, with a little pine in the background. The malt backbone provides balance.

30. Sticky Nectar, draught, Stone & Wood Brewing Co., NSW, Australia
The Sticky Nectar Mango IPA has a sun-golden hue, heady tropical aromas from Galaxy, Citra and Amarillo hops, vanilla and lactose sweetness, and truckloads of mango puree – which together make easy work balancing the beer’s bitterness.

31. Mornington Squid Rising, draught, Tribe Breweries, VIC, Australia
This New England IPA is cloudy, juicy and hoppy!

View the full results of the 2019 AIBA in the Trophy and Medal Winners Guide.