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November 30th, 2011 MARTIN CIZMAR | Drank
 

Drank: Hopportunity Knocks (Caldera)

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Ashland’s Caldera Brewing Company has been producing beer since 1997, but it’s only recently ramped up distribution with plans to open a giant new brewhouse this spring. As the first Oregon outfit to brew and can its own beer—a surprise considering cans are far greener than bottles in the long run—Caldera has an innovator’s edge. Oddly, Caldera’s higher-end “Kettle Series,” which includes a smoked lager, two imperial stouts and Hopportunity Knocks, the company’s second IPA, comes in the familiar 22-ounce bomber. Hopportunity is a purer breed than Caldera’s original IPA, using citrusy Centennial hops almost exclusively. Caldera cooks up the whole hop flower and runs the suds through an atypical filtration system, leaving the bottle we bought at Pearl Specialty Market & Spirits with clean, sharp and grassy flavors. Bitterness is rated up in the 100-unit range, comparable with Ninkasi’s Tricerahops Double IPA, but a surprisingly soft and sweet finish is this beer’s best quality.

 
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