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Green Flash West Coast IPA

Where In Town: Rodman’s, 5100 Wisconsin Ave. NW

Price: $10.99/four-pack

Winter Fail

There is no winter ale less satisfying than one whose label reads “winter ale”—a style with no historical roots. Rather, it is the Hallmark card of the beer world, a bestseller dreamed up by marketing teams and infused with lowest-common-denominator levels of sugar and spice. You could instead drink a seasonally appropriate porter, stout, or boozy Belgian ale… but these malt-bombs can seem as heavy as department-store Santas after a few bottles. I’d like to propose an alternative to the usual holiday styles, a kind of beer-y Festivus: the India pale ale. Not just any IPA, mind you, but Green Flash West Coast IPA, which tastes like liquefied grapefruit, that great globular holiday gift.

Pithy Comeback

In case you witnessed Grapefruitgate—the recent blogosphere and social media fiasco that ensued when a writer for Slate penned a citrus takedown, calling the humble orb baleful and disgusting—fear not. The fruit is still delicious, as is this beer. West Coast IPA smells grassy and citrusy, and the taste is fruity, juicy, and bitter, like a grapefruit San Pellegrino soda infused with Christmas tree trimmings. Pick up a four-pack to ensure a hoppy new year.

Photo by Daniel Fromson