Dogfish Head likes its minutes and it likes its IPAs. Some of those combinations turn out well; some, like the 120 Minute, are more admirable than awesome; others I don't quite get.
The special edition 75 Minute falls into the latter category. Not that it's a bad beer, mind you, it just didn't have the balance I'd expect from what essentially is a blend of the 60 Minute and 90 Minute. This could have been awesome, but it doesn't live up to the rather significant hype.
First, though: Fair is fair, there are a lot of amusing details around the 75 Minute, like its 7.5% ABV and 750 ml bottle. That's kinda cool. The label, too, is amusing.
And the first impressions of the actual beer fares equally well. This is a pretty beer, dark and copper-y, with a clear white head. Sniff it, and you'll pick up on the promised maple syrup straight away, nicely mixed with strong notes of hops.
This might be the root of my "meh" final impression. The sweetness just didn't carry over to the flavor as well as I had expected. The hops dominate here, with the mouthfeel having a strange, sharp, overly carbonated edge to it. That's pretty much the polar opposite of Dogfish Head's description of it.
The way the syrup sort of plays second fiddle to the hops is odd. In a sense this just tastes like somebody squirted a small amount of syrup into a 90 Minute IPA. The harmony I had expected between syrup and hops after whiffing the beer just isn't there.
Really, that's too bad. I think the 75 Minute had great potential, and many people seem to love the beer. I mean, they love it. They're in love with it.
You might have more of a positive impression of the 75 Minute too, so give it a try, certainly. It's not horrible, I had just expected more.
Vote for Dogfish Head 75 Minute IPA: It’s your civic duty!