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The Alchemist Heady Topper IPA

It was our last day in London and we were meeting a friend (AS) down at Abbey Road to get in a bit of Beatles history before leaving the big smoke and heading down to Brighton for a couple of days.

After cruising down to the studios and seeing all the other tourists trying to take the iconic album cover photo, we decided to have a relaxed afternoon, and I suggested we head down to The Craft Beer Co. which happened to be only a 10 minute walk from where we were staying in Kings Cross.

I can’t say that I’ve been to too many dedicated beer bars (5 and counting), but this is one fine establishment. Ratebeer ranks The Craft Beer Co. as the 4th best beer bar in the world, and I can certainly see why. Upon arriving, we were greeted with an absolutely monstrous selection of cask beers as well as at least 20 taps with guest beers that seemed to be lingering from their weekend celebrations. If I had known that the weekend gone was their one year anniversary we would have made sure to head there, but alas, we didn’t.

After having a friendly chat to the bartender, he mentioned that they had received a small shipment of the Alchemist Heady Topper, and were down to 7 cans. I couldn’t believe my luck; here was a beer that I’d salivated over for many months, watching all our American beer lovers post and repost about the all rounded awesomeness that the Heady Topper is.

When we were told the price of £13, YM and I decided to split the costs and taste what we hoped was going to be one hell of an awesome beer. I must say we were both pleasantly surprised about how well rounded and well crafted the beer was. It had huge orange and tropical fruit aromas, with hints of pineapple and a slight chalkiness.

The flavours that follow are no short of out of this world. While most other IPAs around this ABV are almost messy or too full flavoured, I found the Heady Topper to be perfectly balanced with a lovely lingering bitterness packed with more orange and other tropical fruits on the palate.

I would certainly get this one again, but would rather buy it in the US where it appears to be considerably cheaper.

Also on a side note: if you’re ever in London go to The Craft Beer Co., you won’t be disappointed.