We Try Newport Storm’s Mass HysteRIa

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Newport Storm’s Rum-Barrel-Aged Double IPA has just been released.

Newport, RI’s lone brewery, Newport Storm (or Extreme Coastal Brewing, if you want to get technical) has a new beer (and apparently a new graphic designer). One hundred cases of Mass HysteRIa, an 8% abv Double Imperial Pale Ale that was aged in rum-barrels (one can assume Thomas Tew) has been released in Rhode Island. Get them while you can.

Where does the name come from? Ghostbusters, of course.

What does it taste like?

Well, barrel-aged IPAs face the same problem as old IPAs. As the beer gets older, they lose their hoppiness, which for most IPA drinkers is their reason for existing. If a brewery is aging their IPAs intentionally, then you have to accept that they didn’t intend the beer to be a crazy hop-bomb to begin with…but they still have to justify the beer’s existence.

On the front end, the citrusy Southern Hemisphere hops are, as expected, muted, but present. Then there’s a WHOLE LOT of malty bitterness and then…nothing.

Much like the Stone Brewing Company’s R & R Coconut IPA, which was made with 280 lbs of coconut that somehow disappeared into the beer, never to be seen again, we’re having a hell of a time trying to get any notes of rum out of this beer. Typically, with beer aged in bourbon or rum barrels, the booziness is sitting by the exit, waiting to have a nice chat while it walks you out of your sip. In this case, it’s barely gives you a nod before turning to talk to someone more important than you.

The Verdict

If you like super malty beers, hurry up and grab a Mass HysteRIa this weekend, because they won’t last long. If you prefer your double IPAs super-hoppy, look for Grey Sail’s just released Captain’s Daughter. And if you’re looking for a good local boozy barrel-aged beer, break out that bottle of InfRIngement that you have cellared (or wait a few more months like we’re going to).

Tristan Pinnock, Blast Beer Correspondent

Tristan’s just this guy, ya know?