6. Gnarly Barley from Tequesta Brewing
Another pick at our friends to the north in Tequesta, this is Gnarly Barley, an American pale ale with enough flavor to get you going for pint after pint. It's like a hoppy amber (produced with three hop varietals) with a bit of grain kick to it and malt backbone to keep it from becoming snarled into IPA territory. Classic American pale ales are less renown nowadays, it seems, but make no mistake on this one -- it's a true standard and amazing example from the brewers at Tequesta. It also runs at a respectable 6 percent abv, so watch yourself if you're going to attack these hand-over-fist. Which you totally can.
5. Hop Gun IPA from Funky Buddha Brewery
Let's get those hops flowing. By now, we're attuned to the flavors and aromas of refreshing and balanced beers, so it is time to buzz the tower with Oakland Park's flagship Funky Buddha Brewery's Hop Gun IPA. This is a perfect example of what hops can do yet not taste like a pine tree fell into your glass. This one is brewed with Cascade (good core American hop flavor), Galena (a Brewers Gold hybrid, giving floral and fruit aromas), and Nelson Sauvin (from New Zealand, heavy on the citrus) hops, allowing a full spectrum of hop flavors come to the forefront. It's also a bit stronger at 7.7 percent abv, but the strong malt backbone keeps it all from feeling in any way boozy.
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