We Review Lighthouse Switchback (Finally)

If you live on the west coast then you are probably familiar with the India Pale Ale beer style. There are many excellent IPA’s brewed locally such as: Tree Brewery’s Hophead, Central City’s Red Racer IPA, and Driftwood Brewery’s Fat Tug IPA. If you’re on the east coast, comparable brews are: Muskoka Brewery’s Mad Tom IPA and Flying Monkey’s Smash Bomb Atomic IPA.

Last month Lighthouse Brewery from Victoria B.C. took a little break from their limited release series and released Switchback North-Western IPA.

Commercial Description: This hoppy IPA is 80 IBUs and 6.5% alc/vol. Citra, Zythos and Falconer’s Flight hops combine to produce citrus, stone fruit and tropical flavours. The assertive bitterness of these hops is nicely balanced by medium bodied, fresh malt characters. Switchback IPA is a Pacific Northwest style IPA.

     This is not Lighthouse’s first IPA. One of their regular line-up beers is the Beacon IPA which is more of an English style IPA and won a silver medal in the 2004 Canadian Brewing awards. With some great IPAs made locally, there’re only two reasons to release a new version:

  • The brewery is trying to cash in on the popularity of the style
  • The brewer knows their craft and feels they have something to contribute to the conversation that is craft beer

Which will the Switchback be? (We think definitely the latter).


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