We're coming into the height of citrus season and while I love a juicy, red grapefruit to start off and brighten dreary winter days, come later in the day I want my grapefruit to come from a bottle. No, I don't want a glass of grapefruit juice, what I want is a citrus-forward IPA bursting with bright flavor up front, finishing with a pithy bitterness.
One of my current favorites and a great local representation of this is Lompoc Pamplemousse Citrus IPA. In addition to four hop varieties - Centennial, Chinook, Meridian and Tettnang, they also use actual grapefruit juice to create the combination of citrus pop and delicious bitterness that makes my taste buds sing.
In case you were wondering about the name, "pamplemousse" isn't just some long, slightly odd word that Lompoc created but is actually the French word for grapefruit. Fitting, right? From there Lompoc has had some fun with things, creating a mascot, Sir Pamplemousse, which you may have seen at local Lompoc events. He's the leader of the Kingdom of Lompoc and according to "legend" a scurvy old French sea captain was the first to discover grapefruit on the island of Barbados, to which Lompoc celebrates with this beer.
Clocking in at an almost-sessionable 5.8% ABV there's plenty of flavor bang packed into a beer that you can enjoy more than just one of. Perhaps tonight would be a good night to do just that. I mean look at the colors on the label, looks like a "Go, Ducks!" kind of beer to me.