My experience with Northern Ales is, at best, minimal. I know they're from Kettle Falls, which kinda makes them semi-local, and apparently their brewery doubles as a grocery store. So that's quite something.
Their Flume Creek IPA is not a bad beer either. It's not amazing, and I wouldn't travel to Kettle Falls just to drink it again, but it's worth picking up if you find a bottle. Heck, even a six-pack for that matter.
It pours a copper color with an OK head and decent lacing. Pretty inviting looking, and the scent of hops hits the nose straight away. A little bit of grapefruit might be noticeable too, but there's little here to suggest this being a particularly complex IPA.
And what do you know, the nose tells most of the story. The flavor follows it to a proverbial T. There are hops here, and little else, other than just a vague maltiness toward the end. That's not to say Flume Creek is a hop-bomb, it's just that there is little else to the medium bodied beer.
This isn't an exceptionally exciting IPA then, but it's refreshing all the same. Worth trying, particularly if you're a fan of this style of beer. Those who are still on the fence about IPAs might look elsewhere -- you should still be able to find this year's Celebration, for example.
Vote for Northern Ales Flume Creek IPA: It’s your civic duty!