After a hiatus that has gone on for far too long, Tasting Notes has returned to close out the workweek with a look at the oat milk-infused Hazy O! from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery (Milton, Delaware).
Carefully concocted to “[highlight] the magic found at the intersection of two unique, but unexpectedly complementary trends” – Hazy IPAs and Oat Milk, Hazy-O! is a Hazy/Juicy India Pale Ale “brewed with four types of oats – malted oats, rolled oats, naked oats and oat milk” from Elmhurst 1925 – and “liberally dry-hopped with hop varieties that deliver an abundance of tropical notes, including citrus, mango and pineapple.” Coming in at 7.1% ABV, the “sumptuous, full-bodied” Hazy-O! comes together to be “a hop-forward beer that is smooth and refreshing.”
Hazy-O! debuted earlier this year with availability in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans and on draft. You can expect to find this new Year-Round offering at craft beer-focused establishments located in Alabama, Florida, Delaware and throughout the rest of Dogfish Head’s distribution network.
Now that all the background data is out of the way, let’s crack open a can or two and see how this Hazy stacks up!
Tasting Notes for Hazy O! from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Appearance: A steady, cautious pour produces a beer that is a marigold yellow in color and capped with over two fingers of ultra-fluffy white foam. When held to direct light, the orange tones wash away to allow a vibrant golden hue to radiate softly. The beer is super hazy through and through, but an active carbonation presence can still be seen bubbling away within. Head retention is fantastic, falling oh-so-slowly to a lasting half finger that saturates the glass with intricate patterns of lace.
Aroma: Soft citrus tones open the aromatics with notes of clementine and tangerine. Tropical notes rise from the citrus to add copious amounts of mango and pineapple. A gentle malty sweetness rounds things off and closes out the profile.
Taste: The tropical notes lead here with an abundance of fresh and candied pineapple, mango and melon. Citrus lends some balance with a burst of grapefruit and a rounding dose of sweet tangerine. The malts are muted, but they do offer a slightly nutty undertone that is surprisingly at home here. Otherwise, the experience remains intensely juicy.
Mouthfeel: Full side of medium in body with a bright carbonation, this Hazy IPA has a pillowy feel overall but it still remains easy drinking. The juicy characteristics and hefty oat additions provide plenty of balance, but there is still a gently hoppy bite left for you to enjoy in the finish. The ABV is well hidden for 7.1%, only offering a slight tinge of heat in the throat at times. The aftertaste is all candied mango with a twist of grapefruit.
Final Thoughts: It is no secret that we are not huge Hazy IPA fans around here. Given the option, we are probably going West Coast-style 9 times out of 10. That said, there is a time and a place for all beers and we (well, most of us) can appreciate a good Hazy when it crosses our path . . . and that is exactly what happened today.
Hazy O! sets the bar for all Hazy IPAs being produced as Year-Round offerings by larger breweries these days. It has dynamic hop presence that wows with a juiciness that is both familiar and unique. The oat additions and the creative use of oat milk give the beer an incredibly hazy appearance, a luscious body, and even adds to the flavor and aromatics.
In a world where all these Hazy IPAs seem to run together and feel largely the same, Hazy O! actually makes you go “Oh” and take notice. It is a more than solid drinker that will impress hazebros and haze skeptics alike. It pairs perfectly with the beautiful spring weather ahead, so get yourself a sixer and experience it for yourself. Prost!