I’m a little late on this beer review. I usually try to time these so that my brilliant and indescribably beautiful readers can translate my guidance into a purchase before the beer in question leaves the shelves. Given that Anno Quatro, an Imperial IPA from Mike Hess Brewing, is a one-time anniversary beer, I’d wager supplies on this brew are getting pretty lean (though I was able to pick one up just last weekend). However, even if I am indeed late to the game, this beer simply deserves its moment in the sun.
The bright-orange-amber brew doesn’t have a head so much as a lid. It’s seriously formidable. It’s like a delicious beer plug. I know that sounds kind of disgusting, but it isn’t, I promise. Even with a head that substantial, it still allows dank citrus aromas to slip out from within.
I’ve referred to many IPAs as "aggressive" before, but the hop punch on this feels like it's fighting for the title. It’s sticky with heavy notes of pine and a supporting cast of melon, apricot and citrus fruits in the periphery. It has a warming booziness to it (not entirely unexpected for 10.75-percent ABV), but it feels appropriate relative to the flavor onslaught it delivers.
The finish is much cleaner than I would expect for such a hop-forward brew. That’s not to say it’s clean, though. There’s a pleasant bitter resin on this that extends its life significantly.
The Anno Quatro may well be the most substantial Mike Hess Brewing offering I’ve had to date (which, in a world where Venator exists, is really saying something.) Get it
while if you can.