“Too extreme to be called beer? 120 Minute IPA is brewed to a colossal 45-degree plato, boiled for a full two hours while being continuously hopped with high-alpha American hops, then dry-hopped daily in the fermenter for a month and aged for another month on whole-leaf hops!
Clocking in at 15-20% ABV and 120 IBUs, 120 Minute is by far the biggest IPA ever brewed! It’s easy to see why we call this beer THE HOLY GRAIL for hopheads!
We brew 120 Minute IPA a few times a year, but it goes fast. If you find some grab a few bottles — some to enjoy and some to age.
Every Beer Has A Story…”
I first had this beer about four years ago at the Flying Saucer in San Antonio. I then had recently learned of it and I was really intrigued. It wasn’t on the menu so I asked the waitress if they had it and they did. She brought out the bottle and a glass. I knew about the beer. How it was around 18%ABV and 400 calories. I was ready for some crazy beer. I think I was more drawn to the beer because of how limited it is. I enjoyed it back then. I enjoyed it a little less when the bill came and it was a $12 bottle. A couple years later, March 31, 2009, (I know because I wrote on the box they were stored in when I bought them, I have two, this review is for one) I was visiting Washington D.C. I was staying with some friends and I found out there was a Dogfish Head Alehouse nearby. We went for dinner one night and found they had 120 Min on tap. Then I found out it was $18 for eight ounces. There was no way I was going to spend that. All of their beers were a lot more than what you would pay at any kind of bar, lost a little respect for them after that. After dinner we went to a beer store and they had bottle of s 120 Min. I bought two of them, which was $24 total, but I got three times as much beer as I would of at the alehouse. Right from the start I planned to age them. Once we got back to Michigan, I padded them in a box and put them in a closet.
Fast forward 994 days. I am in Michigan again for Christmas. I decide it’s time to drink one of the bottles. All I had were pint glasses and I wanted to correct glassware for the beer. I needed a snifter so I headed to Bed Bath and Beyond, the only place I know around Grand Rapids to buy that kind of glass. I find one and when I get back I pull the beer out of the box. The first time it has seen light 2 3/4 years. I put it in the fridge and try to time it so it’s not really cold but not room temperature. The time comes and I pop open the beer. Right away I smell it. Lots of alcohol and yeast, my nose isn’t even near the bottle. I get my glass and pour it in. Head is almost non-existent, what you see in the photo above is how much there was when I poured it. Smell is the same alcohol and yeast I smelled before with a sweetness now present. It reminded me of a gewurztraminer which is a desert wine. Color was a deep amber brownish. Drinking now I can taste the alcohol right away. Wow, the ABV went way up. Very sticky alcohol too. Very sweet too, like a hoppy sweet with a little something extra that I can’t identify. Alcohol is very warming. When I breathe in there’s the coolness on the back of my throat like I’m drinking whiskey. An unaged 120 Min is very strong, this is even stronger. It took me over an hour to finish it and I was really feeling the alcohol. The ABV had to be at least 30% and might be up to 40%, I could be wrong, but that’s what my head felt like. A couple nights later I had six PBRs, one craft beer, and some champagne and I was no where near the buzz I was feeling from this one beer. As the 120 got warmer, the alcohol taste was less and the beer was overall more enjoyable.
This was a great beverage. I can’t call it a beer. I’m not sure how long I will age the other bottle. Now that I know how it is when aged, I’m sure I can hold out a lot longer.