The Lone Wolf IPA (ABV 6.5%) from Fernie Brewing Company is by far the most bad-ass IPA I've ever had, bar none. This experience will explain why.
I ordered this brew with my buddy Danny at the Hop and Vine in Burnaby, and we split a 650mL bottle because he needed to try this too. Not the greatest photo snapped, mainly because I used my iPhone in a pub.
On first sip, every cell in the smelling sense of your body is hit with hops and golden citrus peel. It is a delicious yet dangerous smell. It smells like it'll be a strong IPA, and then you realize your body needs to put its guard up for this one.
Guard up or down, the first sip can be described by asking the following question: "You know Bruce Lee?" The people around you will slowly nod, confused. "Imagine him dragon-kicking you in the mouth with flavour", and that about describes it.
The IBU (International Bitterness Unit) scale rates most IPA brews between 50-80. The Lone Wolf IPA gets a 65 rating (corrected from 100+, thanks to @FernieBrewingCo for the tweet!) but this is about as bitter as it gets. This is because the flavoured are complex, but they are strong and flow well at the same time.
What did I think of the "bad-ass" flavour? Well, it was overwhelming, but at the same time, delicious. I could see Danny trying to keep a straight face, until he asked me "Why the hell did you order this??" It was too overwhelming for him; it's most-often overwhelming for anyone who tries it.
Like I say, it's for the experienced brew-goer. If you live in an area where you can buy this, I highly recommend adding this brew to your bucket list.
Would I cook with it? No.
Would I pair it with food? No.
It's only 6.5%, so it's not going to do as much damage as it tastes like it might. But this is definitely one you can brag to all your friends about.
The Lone Wolf IPA gets a hulk-smashing 8.5 / 10