Bell’s Two Hearted Ale: Sure, this is California, land of IPAs so brilliant they could numb your tongue permanently with hops, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t welcome one of the U.S.’s most wonderful IPAs: Bell’s Two Hearted Ale. This Michigan ale has long been considered one of the country’s best, and at last it’s available in Santa Barbara County.
While it’s not a CA hop-bomb, no lupulin lover will be disappointed with the burst of 100 percent Centennial hops on the nose (particularly) and on the palate. Piney, sure, but even more citrus on the attack. But what Two Hearted Ale has that many West Coast IPAs lack is a hearty malty backbone. What else would you expect from the Midwest but brilliant, solid balance?
Just watch, as that balance makes it drink like session beer, but it does clock in at 7 percent ABV—not something staggering, but it will slow you down after a couple. And you’ll want a couple.